UPDATE: GSK and Avalon commit $495m to startups
This article was originally published in Scrip
GlaxoSmithKline will invest as much as $465 million to fund and potentially acquire 10 biotechnology startups founded by Avalon Ventures, which will give the venture capital firm up to a 13x return on its $30 million invested in the collaboration to back early-stage discovery platforms and drug candidates.
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Celiac disease specialist Sitari was the first company formed under the six-year collaboration. Three were shut down and Avalon controls the other four, which aren't compatible with GSK's new R&D focus.
Even Series A rounds have been large during recent record-breaking years for biotech venture capital investment, but it looks like smaller financings for early-stage companies may be in the midst of a comeback. With VC firms closing new funds, that raises the question: Will the number of preclinical and Phase I financings increase?
CEO Amit Munshi told the J.P. Morgan meeting the company will double the size of its clinical-stage cardiovascular disease pipeline with the addition of temanogrel.