UPDATED: WuXi Healthcare plots a $250M biotech venture fund for U.S., China

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WuXi CEO Ge Li

Fast-growing R&D services outfit WuXi PharmaTech ($WX) is marching ahead with plans to join in a $250 million venture fund aimed at U.S. and China life sciences companies. Execs with WuXi Healthcare Venture Fund II filed documents with the SEC last week outlining their goal, which WuXi PharmaTech has made a $50 million anchor investment in.

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WuXi outlined its plans to follow up on an initial $63 million fund--set up originally in 2011--in its annual report last April. The first fund invested in 18 companies overall but expects this new venture will go much further. A spokesperson for the company tells FierceBiotech that WuXi PharmaTech is one of several partners in the standalone venture fund and did not file the SEC document.

"WuXi Healthcare Ventures Fund II is being formed to invest in significant equity stakes in the U.S. and China," the company reported in its annual report. The general partners of WuXi Ventures are expected to consist of three operating partners and two non-operating partners (Dr. Ge Li and Edward Hu)."

Ge Li is the well-known CEO of WuXi--and one of this year's class of industry influentials--and Edward Hu is CFO of the company.

WuXi has been growing like gangbusters in recent years. Based in the Cayman Islands, the bulk of its operations are in Shanghai, with new facilities being planned to boost the infrastructure inside the U.S. Ge Li recently announced that he wants to take the company private again.

With biotech IPOs going and blowing in the U.S. for the third year, venture funds aimed at seeding new startups and growing existing companies have been finding it relatively easy to raise new cash. The 2008 financial crisis triggered a shakeout in the venture arena, but many of the remaining players are doubling down with new funds and new technologies.

- here's the filing

Special Report: The 25 most influential people in biopharma in 2015 - Ge Li - WuXi PharmaTech

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