XPrize board member raises $100M fund to tackle aging

Longevity Vision Fund has exited stealth with plans to invest $100 million in startups with aspirations to extend healthy life spans. The fund, which is linked to the founder of XPrize, will pump the money into biotechs and other longevity startups based around the world in seed to series B rounds.

Sergey Young, the founder of Longevity Vision, unveiled the fund at an event in London this week. Young is the cofounder of Peak State Ventures and an innovation board member at XPrize Foundation, a nonprofit known for running competitions to incentivize advances in fields including suborbital space flight.

At Peak State, Young and his colleagues invest in fields well outside of longevity, including property and education. But Young has established a foothold in the longevity space, leading to him becoming development sponsor of Longevity XPrize and a longevity partner at Bold Capital Partners.

Now, Young is using his experience and connections to invest $100 million in the longevity sector. The fund will cooperate with Bold Capital, a VC fund created by XPrize founder Peter Diamandis that has backed startups in or adjacent to the longevity field such as Iota Biosciences and Insilico Medicine.

Longevity Vision will get deeper into the field by investing in startups in the U.S., China and Europe that are working on therapeutics, IT products, services and infrastructure related to the goal of increasing healthy human life spans.

Young wants to increase human life spans to 200 years and make the technologies that enable such advances available to 1 billion people or more. Some of Young’s collaborators publicly express more conservative goals, but either way the potential health and financial payoffs are significant.

“Adding 20 to 30 healthy years on a person's life is likely to be the largest market opportunity on Earth. The convergence of genome sequencing, AI and cellular medicine will enable breakthroughs that will make 100 years old the new 60,” Diamandis said in a statement.

The ability of therapeutics and other complementary technologies to power such changes in healthy life spans remains unproven, but a growing pool of investors and startups are working on the problem. For now, the sums involved remain relatively small compared to the broader biotech sector, with the $100 million Longevity Vision Fund joining Juvenescence among the bigger players.