Start-Ups & SMEs
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Interest in longevity and anti-aging is gathering momentum, and Pfizer has dipped its toe in the water with an early-stage drug discovery partnership.
Recent financings, including the $150m launch of Pathalys and a planned $100m IPO for Mineralys, illustrate the reality of biopharma funding in 2023 – that having near-term clinical trial milestones are key to fundraising this year. Companies with dwindling cash are conserving the funds they have left.
Investors, advisors and CEOs at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference and Biotech Showcase were somewhat optimistic about fundraising this year, but noted certain companies may have to call it quits.
Now the pandemic-era biotech boom is over, biopharma companies and investors are both adjusting their financing strategies to survive and even thrive in the new environment.
Public Company Edition: Also, Johnson & Johnson’s consumer health spin-out Kenvue filed paperwork to get the ball rolling on an initial public offering. In addition, Geron raised $198m and Madrigal accessed more than $300m after positive trial readouts, but layoffs were revealed by Editas, Elevation, Nabriva and others.
Private Company Edition: While Coya Therapeutics raised $15.25m in the final initial public offering in the US last year, Apnimed stayed private raising $80m in a series C extension and Metagenomi extended its series B by $100m to total $275m.
Private Company Edition: Pitchbook is out with an early look at its venture capital expectations for next year, showing continued interest in seed financings and fewer $100m-plus mega-rounds. Recent VC deals include a $75m series B financing for Alpha-9 Theranostics and $71.6m for A2 Biotherapeutics.
Private Company Edition: In recent weeks, 19 companies disclosed venture capital funding of $20m or more, including FogPharma with a $178m series D round and Apogee’s $169m launch. Also, Avalon BioVentures spun out of Avalon Ventures with a $135m fund.
The frontrunner in the new protein degrader class has shown lackluster Phase II results in breast cancer, but Arvinas hopes for success in less heavily pre-treated patients in Phase III.
Private Company Edition: In the latest round of $100m-plus venture capital financings, CG Oncology, MBX Biosciences and Jnana Therapeutics raised $120m, $115m and $107m, respectively. Also, MVM Partners closed a $500m fund and former Sage CEO leads incubator ABio-X in Massachusetts.
Leaders from three companies that have managed to achieve successful turnarounds offered some advice and encouragement to biotechs weathering the current financial downturn at the recent Jefferies Healthcare conference in London.
Industry investors foresee continued hardship for public companies still without compelling clinical data for their assets, plus the growing influence of the US Inflation Reduction Act on biopharma strategy.
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