BenevolentAI to reduce staff by 30% in business reshuffle

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BenevolentAI has announced it will be reducing headcount by around 30% and closing its US office as part of a change of focus in its business priorities.

The company says it will focus on its AI-driven drug discovery collaboration and proprietary pipeline, believing these will bring the greatest potential return for shareholders.

Work on the Knowledge Exploration Tools will cease, due to the investment needed to fully commercialise this SaaS product and the estimated timeframe to see a potential meaningful financial return.

The company hopes these changes will reduce costs by 20%, even after partial reinvestment of the savings into Phase Ib/IIa enabling studies for its lead asset BEN-8744, following positive results from the Phase Ia trial in ulcerative colitis (UC).

It remains committed to its previous guidance of signing at least one new collaboration and out-licensing at least one of its pipeline assets during 2024.

Dr Joerg Moeller, Chief Executive Officer of BenevolentAI, said: “While these situations are always difficult, as a company we have a duty to our shareholders to optimise capital allocation in the areas where we believe the potential return is the greatest. BenevolentAI is an AI augmented drug discovery company uniting science and technology with the aim to develop life-changing medicines for patients.

“Therefore, I believe that focusing our organisation on furthering our drug discovery collaborations and progressing our proprietary pipeline is the best way to achieve both the goal, of delivering value creation for our shareholders and delivering innovative medicines to patients suffering from very serious medical conditions.”

Diana Spencer, Senior Digital Content Editor, DDW

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