Promethera® Biosciences SA, a global innovator in cell-based medicines and liver diseases, today announced the addition of €7.5 million to its recent €39.7 million Series D financing led by new investors Sony Innovation Fund by IGV and Pegasus Tech Ventures. MEDIPAL HOLDINGS CORPORATION, the family office Six Snow, a Japanese private investor and a Belgian private investor also contributed to the extension. Promethera will use the proceeds from the financing to further advance the company’s clinical programs in Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and Acute-on-Chronic Liver Failure (ACLF), as well as to accelerate Promethera’s growth in the Asian markets. The company plans to initiate clinical trials outside Europe in its two lead indications, NASH and ACLF, during the course of 2020.
“The additional investment by Sony Innovation Fund by IGV and Pegasus Tech Ventures continues to acknowledge the potential of our HepaStem™ technology,” said John Tchelingerian, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Promethera Group. “With the additional funds provided by the Series D expansion, Promethera plans to further solidify its position as the leading drug development organization in cell-based therapies and regenerative medicines targeting severe liver disorders.”
Mr. Gen Tsuchikawa, CEO at Innovation Growth Ventures (IGV) added, “We decided to invest in Promethera due to the company’s track record, their global presence, and their promising development programs in areas with significant unmet medical need. Promethera’s management has steadily advanced the company’s capabilities in stem cell therapeutics for liver diseases and we are happy to invest during this stage of impressive growth.”
Over the course of the past 18 months, Promethera has established a rapidly growing organization in Japan with a local branch office in Tokyo that acts as a cornerstone for the company’s expansion strategy in Asia. Through a series of financing transactions, Promethera has attracted a number of domestic institutional investors in Asia such as Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Mitsubishi UFJ Capital Co., Ltd., Shinsei Corporate Investment, Cell Innovation Partners, Shinsei Capital Partners, Korea Investment Partners, Mirae Asset Capital, Beyond Next Ventures, Ci:z Investment LLP and Co-High/CMBCC. The investor base is further complemented by a group of renowned European venture capital firms and family offices as well as strategic investors and corporate venture companies, namely ITOCHU Corporation, Shibuya Corporation, LifeLiver, Sosei Corporate Venture Capital and MEDIPAL HOLDINGS CORPORATION.
HepaStem™ consists of liver derived stem cells that are obtained from ethically donated healthy human organs and expanded in GMP culture conditions. Updated clinical data from the ongoing phase 2a study (HEP101) in patients with Acute-on-Chronic Liver Failure (ACLF) or Acute Decompensation (AD) at high risk of developing ACLF have been presented in an oral presentation at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) on November 10, 2019, in Boston, by Promethera®’s principal investigator Prof. F. Nevens, KULeuven, Belgium. The data set confirmed earlier findings presented at The International Liver Congress™ - ILC 2019 in April.
A first clinical trial in NASH was initiated H1 2019. In addition to its cell-based approaches, Promethera is advancing a portfolio of complementary biologics approaches including the anti-TNF-R1 antibody Atrosimab.
About Sony Innovation Fund by IGV
Sony Innovation Fund by IGV is one of the Sony Group’s venture investment programs. Sony Corporation and Daiwa Capital Holdings established Innovation Growth Ventures Corporation as part of this program. This venture capital fund was launched in June 2019 by recruiting investors from among both Sony and Daiwa’s group companies in addition to external investors.
About Pegasus Tech Ventures
Pegasus Tech Ventures, headquartered in Silicon Valley, is a venture capital firm that has invested in over 160 startups in the world, including Sofi, 23andMe, Vicarious, x.ai, Color Genomics, Affectiva in US and its Japan portfolio includes post IPO companies such as ZUU, AI CROSS, Geniee, Money Forward, Evolable Asia, Metaps, and DLE, as well as Terra Motors, UniFa, Monstar Lab, Star Festival, Life is Tech, Modalis, and FiNC Technologies. Pegasus invests in companies with the objective of creating financial value and creating strategic value for the firm’s investors and portfolio companies. For more information, please visit http://www.pegasustechventures.com.