Delenex Therapeutics Secures CHF 13.5 Million Series A Venture Financing

Delenex Therapeutics Secures CHF 13.5 Million Series A Venture Financing
ZURICH-SCHLIEREN, SWITZERLAND--(Marketwire - November 12, 2010) -

Delenex Therapeutics AG, a Swiss biotech company developing therapeutic antibody fragments targeting serious medical diseases with high unmet need, has announced the closing of its Series A venture equity investment round securing CHF 13.5 million (USD 14 million, EUR 10 million).

The initial financing round was led by SV Life Sciences, HBM BioCapital, HBM BioVentures, BioMedInvest and VI Partners, all leading venture capital firms in the biotech industry.

Delenex is a biotech company that was spun out of ESBATech AG in September 2009 when the company with its ophthalmology business was acquired by Alcon, Inc. Delenex received access to all rights to the further development, application and royalty-free commercialisation of the clinically validated ESBATech antibody technology and products in all fields outside ophthalmology.

The new funding will enable Delenex Therapeutics to develop best-in-class therapeutic antibody fragments for diseases with high unmet medical need. The primary focus will be on local and/or topical therapies for central nervous system (CNS), inflammatory, respiratory and dermatologic disorders. Given the already validated status of its technology, the company plans to initiate additional clinical trials within the near future.

Delenex operates out of its own labs and offices in Zürich-Schlieren. The management team consists of Thomas Hecht MD (Executive Chairman), Titus Kretzschmar PhD (Chief Scientific Officer) and Hamish Cameron MD (Business Development). Collectively, the team has extensive experience in leading successful venture and product development companies.

Thomas Hecht, Executive Chairman commented: "We are delighted to have received such strong support from blue chip investors. Their commitment - as former investors in ESBATech - validates our strong technology platform and business strategy. Thanks to their long-standing track record and in-depth understanding of the antibody field, we get much more than financial backing."

Graham Boulnois, PhD, Partner with SV Life Sciences commented: "Delenex Therapeutics now has an attractive, clinically validated antibody fragment platform with a strong intellectual property position. The technology is an excellent fit into the therapeutic antibody space. It will deliver a pipeline of commercially attractive new products based on highly stable antibody fragments with striking drug-like properties derived from fully human scaffolds. In addition, it provides significant high-value partnering opportunities across multiple therapeutic areas. We are excited to be working with the company and the other investors to build another leading antibody company on the back of the ESBATech heritage."

For further information about Delenex and its technology, please visit


About SV Life Sciences

SV Life Sciences is a leading international life sciences venture capital firm. SVLS affiliated funds have been investing in life sciences companies since the early 1980s and the firm closed its first dedicated life sciences fund in 1994. The SVLS team manages five venture capital funds and a publicly traded investment trust with approximately $2 billion of capital under management. The firm employs a diversified strategy within life sciences in order to selectively capitalize on an expanding opportunity in biotech, medical devices and health- care services. SVLS has offices in Boston, London and San Francisco.

About HBM Partners

HBM Partners is among the global leaders in life science-focused investing with approximately USD 1 billion under management. HBM's advisory business was founded with the vision to invest across the life cycle of healthcare companies, from venture-backed early-stage all the way to listed companies. HBM BioVentures and HBM BioCapital are among the funds managed by HBM Partners. Since 2001, HBM Partners has realized 38 IPOs and trade sales from its portfolios of healthcare and life sciences companies.

About BioMedInvest

BioMedInvest AG I is a healthcare-dedicated venture capital fund based in Switzerland, providing private equity financing to early- to mid-stage companies in Switzerland and neighbouring regions (Alpine Rim). BioMedInvest currently invests out of Fund I, which has a size of CHF 100 million and was closed in 2003. The investment strategy allows for investments in start-up companies looking for first-round funding through to later-stage or spin-off companies focused on product development in the biotechnology, emerging pharmaceuticals, healthcare and medical technology sectors. The amount to invest over the life time of portfolio companies is about CHF 1-10 million. BioMedInvest typically plays the lead or co-lead investor role structuring the transaction and syndicating with other venture capital firms.

About VI Partners

VI Partners is a Swiss venture capital firm that supports university spin- offs as well as other promising start-up companies with capital, coaching, consulting and networks. Via the current "Venture Incubator" fund, VI Partners invests "Smart Money" to develop promising technology-based ideas for products and services into successful businesses. Venture Incubator was established by McKinsey & Company and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich (ETHZ), and started operations in 2001. It now manages an investment fund of CHF 101 million. Its investors represent 10 blue-chip enterprises from industry and finance.