New Boehringer fund to invest $135M in biotech, start-ups

Corporate venture arms have become all the rage in the pharma world, and now Boehringer Ingelheim is weighing in with its own €100 million fund. The Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund--BIVF--plans to invest in biotech and start-up companies, with its first deals planned for later in the year.

"Our investments will extend beyond the current therapeutic area focus of Boehringer Ingelheim and our existing therapeutic approaches and technologies." says Prof. Andreas Barner, chairman of the board of Boehringer Ingelheim. "We have extensive drug discovery expertise and can take advantage of knowledge and experience available within our global organization, but we are aware that there is an entire landscape of novel therapeutic ideas and potentially breakthrough technologies that need to be supported for future patients' benefit."    

BIVF has already flagged its top areas of interest: stem cells, RNA silencing, new generation vaccines, new generation protein or antibody technologies, new molecular targets and first-in-class lead compounds. Disease-related biomarkers are an additional focus.

- here's Boehringer's release