ROTTERDAM, The Netherlands, September 10 arGEN-X BV, abiopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of humanantibodies using its proprietary SIMPLE Antibody(TM) platform, todayannounced the successful first closing of its Series A equity financinground. The Company raised EUR 9.5million (~ USD 13.6 million) from asyndicate of leading life science investors. The financing round is one ofthe largest of its kind in the last 12 months.
The deal was co-led by Forbion Capital Partners (The Netherlands) and LSP(Life Sciences Partners - The Netherlands). Christina Takke for ForbionCapital Partners and John de Koning for LSP have joined the arGEN-XSupervisory Board. Other members of the syndicate are KBC Private Equity(Belgium), BioGeneration Ventures (The Netherlands) and existing shareholdersErasmus MC Biomedical Fund and Thuja Capital Healthcare Funds.
arGEN-X will use the proceeds to further develop the Company'sproprietary, unencumbered SIMPLE Antibody(TM) engine and to continue to builda proprietary pre-clinical antibody product portfolio. arGEN-X's SIMPLEAntibody(TM) platform yields monoclonal antibodies which combine anunparalleled functional diversity against human disease targets with best inclass human germline homology. arGEN-X's SIMPLE Antibodies(TM) are generatedin vivo, starting from active immunization, and exhibit ultra high startingaffinities and potencies without the need for further engineering.
The arGEN-X platform has the potential to rapidly create exciting productcandidates both against novel therapeutic targets and against targets wherestandard antibody approaches fail to generate an optimal lead diversity.
Christina Takke, PhD, Principal at Forbion Capital Partners commented:"We are impressed with the quality of the arGEN-X management team, theirsolid business approach and outstanding achievements to date. The currentfinancing round will allow arGEN-X to unlock the real value of itstechnology. Forbion is very pleased to support arGEN-X's future plans in thehighly attractive monoclonal antibody space."
John de Koning, PhD, Partner at LSP continued: "We are impressed byarGEN-X's SIMPLE Antibody(TM) platform, its strong proprietary position andits ability to efficiently generate gold standard, human antibodies asdemonstrated by the Company's lead program. We believe arGEN-X is wellpositioned to play an important role in tomorrow's human monoclonal antibodymarket."
Peter Verhaeghe, Chairman of the Board of arGEN-X added: "We are verypleased with this significant equity financing, one of the largest earlystage investments in our sector in the past year. arGEN-X's ability to raisethis significant financing from such a high quality investor syndicate in avery difficult financial market is a strong vote of confidence in and atestimony to the tremendous value creation potential of the Company and itsTeam. arGEN-X is now well positioned to execute its business plan over thenext two years."
Note for the Editor
About arGEN-X - http://www.arGEN-X.com
arGEN-X is a research stage biopharmaceutical company with a broadlyapplicable, proprietary SIMPLE Antibody(TM) platform. The platform allowsarGEN-X to create an unparalleled diversity of in vivo generated antibodyleads against a broad range of human disease targets. This superior choice ofultra-high affinity and highly potent leads, having best-in-class humanhomology, allows for more stringent lead selection criteria, therebyincreasing the probability of success later in the drug development path. TheCompany has validated its monoclonal antibody platform on two human diseasetargets and has broad patent claims in place covering its technology.
arGEN-X(TM) and SIMPLE Antibody(TM) are deposited trademarks of arGEN-XBV.
SIMPLE stands for Superior Immunodiversity with Minimal Protein LeadEngineering.
About Forbion Capital Partners - http://www.forbion.com
Forbion Capital Partners is a Netherlands-based venture capital firmfocused on investing in life sciences companies, in particular in world-classdrug discovery & development as well as med tech companies addressingsubstantial unmet medical needs. Forbion's investment team of eightinvestment professionals has built an impressive performance track recordsince the late nineties with successful investments in Rhein Biotech,Crucell, Neutec, Glycart, Borean, Impella, Alantos and Acorda. Current assetsunder management exceed EUR 300M, split between three active funds andcomprising some 24 promising portfolio companies.
About LSP - http://www.lspvc.com
LSP (Life Sciences Partners) is a leading independent European investmentfirm, providing financing to private and public life-science companies. Sincethe late 1980s, LSP's management has invested in a large number of highlyinnovative enterprises, many of which have grown to become leaders of theglobal life-science industry. For example, LSP was a founding investor inCrucell, DNage, Qiagen, Rhein Biotech and Pharming. With over EUR 500 millionunder management and offices in Amsterdam, Munich and Boston, LSP is one ofEurope's largest and most experienced specialist life-science investors.
About KBC Private Equity - http://www.kbcpe.be
KBC Private Equity, the private equity company of the KBC Group, providesdevelopment capital to and finances buy-outs of small and medium-sizedcompanies. KBC Private Equity takes both majority and minority stakes incompanies and contributes financial resources in the form of equity financeand/or mezzanine finance. Boasting an experienced team of 25 people, KBCPrivate Equity has more than 60 active direct investments in portfolio with amarket value in excess of EUR400 million. As an active shareholder with along-term perspective, it is involved in taking strategic decisions andproviding support to management in the further development of their company.As part of KBC Group, KBC Private Equity can rely on the Group's extensivenetwork and knowledge.
The Life Sciences division of KBC Private Equity invests in early- tolate-stage life-science companies, with a focus on pharmaceutical biotech.Investments include Ablynx, Devgen, Innogenetics, Movetis, and Tibotec-Virco.
About BioGeneration Ventures - http://www.biogenerationventures.com
BioGeneration Ventures invests in seed and early stage Dutch LifeSciences companies. The team of BioGeneration is specialized in creatingvalue from new technologies and the management of start-up companies.BioGeneration Ventures was co-founded by the Netherlands Genomics Initiative(NGI), NWO, the holding of the University of Leiden, and ABN-AMRO Capital.
About Erasmus MC Biomedical Fund - http://www.erasmusmcfund.nl
The Erasmus MC Biomedical Fund is an independent venture capital fundfocusing on early stage companies and (university) spin-outs in thebiotechnology and biomedical field with a presence in the Rotterdam region.The fund targets companies that are developing commercially promisingproducts and technologies in life sciences, including pharmaceuticals,biotechnology, information technology and other high technology opportunitiesthat offer venture capital returns.
About Thuja Capital Healthcare Funds - http://www.thujacapital.com
The Thuja Capital Healthcare Fund and Thuja Capital Healthcare Seed Fundare venture capital funds structured to invest in life sciences innovationswith a focus on therapeutics, diagnostics and medical devices. Whereby theprime focus of the Seed Fund is on privately held early-stage life sciencescompanies located in the Netherlands. The Thuja Capital Healthcare Seed Fundand the Thuja Capital Healthcare Fund are managed by Thuja Capital. Inaddition, Thuja Capital is the exclusive manager of AlpInvest Partners'portfolio of early stage life sciences companies. Thuja Capital's team has along-standing track record in successful life science investments. Apart fromequity investments, Thuja Capital aims to actively help their portfoliocompanies to strengthen and grow their businesses.For further information, please contact: Citigate Dewe Rogerson David Dible, Mark Swallow T: +44-207-282-2949 / 2948 E: [email protected]
arGEN-X Tim Van Hauwermeiren, MSc, eMBA Chief Executive Officer T: +31-6-122-85-257 E: [email protected]