CircuLite, a developer of a surgically implanted blood pump for long-term use in heart failure patients, has raised $30 million for its oversubscribed Series D financing round. The round was led by new investor, MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, and Netherlands-based Forbion Capital Partners, a founding VC of CircuLite and the largest investor in the company.
Forbion Capital Partners is pleased to announce, that its investee company, CircuLite, Inc., the developer of the “Synergy”, the world’s smallest surgically implanted blood pump for long-term use in heart failure patients, has raised $30 million for its oversubscribed Series D financing round. The round was led by new investor, MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Inc., and Forbion Capital Partners, a founding VC of CircuLite and the largest investor in the Company.
Proceeds from the Series D financing will support the anticipated European commercial launch of the Synergy® circulatory support system for patients with Class IIIb and early Class IV heart failure, pending the receipt of CE Mark approval anticipated in the first half of 2012. The Series D funding will also support the U.S. clinical development of Synergy from a pilot IDE study through the initiation of a pivotal trial, and will enable CircuLite to initiate a first-in-human study in Europe with an endovascular system.
“This significant and oversubscribed Series D financing underscores the substantial potential of the Synergy system to improve heart failure treatment. These proceeds will support our continued leadership position in the field advancing our pipeline of products for heart failure patients, including launch of our Synergy system in Europe in 2012,” said Paul Southworth, President and CEO of CircuLite.
“Forbion has seen CircuLite through its various stages, from its inception when the key technology was spun off from the Helmholtz Institute in Aachen, Germany, to its current level of maturity” said Martien van Osch of Forbion Capital Partners and a Director on CircuLite’s Board. “CircuLite is an excellent example of European technology optimally benefitting from a transatlantic effort, by combining Germany-based innovative and specialized R&D capabilities with US-based professional corporate leadership and business savvy”.
“The technology on which CircuLite was founded has proven to be a broad platform enabling the development of a rich product pipeline,” stated Dr. Avi Molcho of Forbion Capital Partners and a director on CircuLite’s Board. “The Company’s products address the largest population of heart failure patients compared to any other device-based treatment. The ability to treat a range from the less sick to severe heart failure patients clearly positions CircuLite as a leading player in this field.”
“The cardiology and cardiac surgery communities are seeking new, minimally invasive options for treating heart failure patients, and as a result, are very interested in the Synergy system,” said Dr. Rose of MacAndrews & Forbes. “CircuLite’s leadership in the development of innovative circulatory support systems and the clinical and commercial promise of Synergy in Europe and the U.S. all make CircuLite an attractive investment opportunity.”
Prior to joining MacAndrews & Forbes in 2007, Dr. Rose was Chairman of the Department of Surgery and Surgeon-in-Chief of the Columbia Presbyterian Center of New York Presbyterian Hospital. Dr. Rose is a past President of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation and was also the Morris & Rose Millstein Professor of Surgery at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons’ Department of Surgery.
About Forbion Capital Partners
Forbion Capital Partners is a dedicated Life Sciences venture capital firm with offices in Naarden, The Netherlands, and Munich, Germany. Forbion invests in life sciences companies in drug discovery & development as well as medical device companies addressing substantial unmet medical needs. Forbion’s investment team of nine investment professionals has built an impressive performance track record since the late nineties with successful investments in Rhein Biotech, Crucell, Neutec, Glycart, Borean, Impella, Alantos, Acorda, Fovea, PanGenetics, Argenta Discovery and most recently Biovex and Pathway Medical. Current assets under management exceed $500M, split between three active funds and comprising some 28 promising portfolio companies. Forbion Capital Partners Fund II is supported by the European Investment Fund through its ERP and LfA facilities. Forbion co-manages Biogeneration Ventures, an early stage fund focused on (academic) spin-outs and seed investments in the Netherlands.
CircuLite is developing disruptive solutions to improve the treatment of advanced heart failure. The Company’s minimally invasive circulatory support systems are intended to work in conjunction with the heart to enhance clinical outcomes and improve quality of life for patients and their families. Synergy®, currently in a CE Mark clinical trial, features the world’s smallest surgically implanted blood pump for long-term use in patients with NYHA Class IIIb/early IV disease. Next-generation circulatory assist systems in development include an endovascular system, a right-heart system, a pediatric system, and an all-support system. For more information, visit our website at www.CircuLite.net.
Synergy is a miniature ventricular assist system intended to offer a new minimally invasive treatment option for patients with chronic heart failure who are not responding to standard medical care. The system is intended to offers patients significant benefits over standard therapies, including reduced symptoms of heart failure and associated re-hospitalizations, as well as improved exercise tolerance and quality of life.
Synergy’s Micro-Pump is the size of an AA battery, circulates up to 4.25 liters of blood per minute, and is intended to reduce the heart’s workload while improving blood flow to vital organs. Synergy supplements the heart’s native pumping capacity and preserves its ability to respond to the patient’s cardiac output demands. The system is surgically implanted using a mini-thoracotomy and the Micro-Pump is placed in a pacemaker-like pocket.