Novo Nordisk Foundation
In organizational terms, the Novo Nordisk Foundation awards grants and Novo Holdings A/S, the Foundation’s wholly owned subsidiary, manages the Foundation’s commercial activities. The objective of Novo Holdings A/S is to manage the Foundation’s endowment and invest its assests to ensuring that the Foundation obtains a satisfactory financial return.
So how does it work?
Novo Holdings A/S
Novo Holdings A/S is the holding company for companies in the Novo Group. In addition to its ownership stake in Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S, Novo Holdings A/S manages the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s endowment by:
- investing in life-science companies at various stages of their development:
- at the seed phase – the green-shoots stage with modest capital requirements;
- in the venture phase – in which an established company needs to develop its business concept further; and
- in well-managed, well-established and profitable biomedical and bioindustrial companies, such as Chr. Hansen;
- financial investments, primarily in equities and bonds.
Ownership and majority holding in Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S
In accordance with the Foundation’s Articles of Association, the Foundation is obligated to maintain a controlling interest in Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S, the Novo Group’s two large publicly listed companies.
At the end of 2017, Novo Holdings A/S owned A (multiple voting rights) and B (ordinary) shares in Novo Nordisk A/S equivalent to about 28% of the share capital and about 75% of the votes and A and B shares in Novozymes A/S equivalent to about 25% of the share capital and about 71% of the votes. The A (multiple voting rights) shares in the two companies are unlisted and are not traded. In both Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S, the A shares have voting rights that are 10 times greater than those of the B (ordinary) shares.
Read more about investing in Life Science companies on Novo Holdings A/S’ website.