Versant Ventures Closes Sixth Healthcare Fund at $400 million

Versant Ventures today announced the close of its newest fund, Versant Venture Capital VI, at its hard cap of $400 million. Versant will use its diversified global investment strategy to find, form and fund innovative healthcare companies with an emphasis on novel therapeutics. Fund VI was highly oversubscribed and was supported by existing and new limited partners. The fund will invest in 20‐25 biotechnology companies in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Versant expects to make its initial investment from the new fund in the first quarter.

“We are grateful to work with such high‐quality limited partners who have demonstrated their commitment to and belief in our strategy, team and the overall potential of the healthcare sector,” said Versant Managing Director Brad Bolzon, Ph.D. “Versant has enjoyed unprecedented deal flow and outlier returns in recent years, and we believe we are well‐positioned for continued success in both North America and Europe.”

Versant’s strategy has shifted to emphasize breakthrough innovation in the biotech sector and to take advantage of the firm’s broad global operating presence. Recent biotech acquisitions and IPOs in North America and Europe include Quanticel, Novira, Okairos, Clovis, CRISPR, Audentes, GenSight and several others. The firm also has created significant capacity for company building through its three internal discovery engines and collaborations with numerous academic institutions and pharmaceutical company partners. Versant’s expanding discovery engines currently house more than 80 research scientists and now extend across several regions. They include Blueline Bioscience in Toronto, Highline Therapeutics in New York, and Inception Sciences in San Diego, Vancouver and Montreal.

One third of the future Fund VI investments are expected to be derived from these engines.

“We’ve grown the discovery engine network from a single San Diego facility in 2011 to five fully operating research sites that cover the West Coast, Northeast and Canada, and will soon extend to Europe. As a result of this expansion, we are better enabled to invest in breakthrough academic discoveries that can be translated into life‐changing therapies for patients,” said Dr. Bolzon.

Managing directors for Fund VI are Dr. Bolzon, Jerel Davis, Ph.D., Kirk Nielsen, Tom Woiwode, Ph.D., and CFO Robin Praeger.

“We are very pleased with how effectively Versant has transformed a very differentiated investment strategy into a strong portfolio that is delivering top‐tier financial performance,” said Cedric Bisson, partner at Teralys and chairman of the Versant Limited Partner Advisory Committee.

 

Source: Versant Ventures Press Release

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