GP Healthcare leads $28 mln Series B for Adagene

GP Healthcare Capital led a $28 million Series B funding round in Adagene, a Chinese biotech company. Current backers Eight Roads Ventures China, F-Prime Capital and WuXi Corporate Venture Fund and new investor New World TMT also participated in the round.


SUZHOU, China, Jan. 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Adagene Inc., a leading antibody discovery and development company, today announced a $28 million Series B financing led by GP Healthcare Capital. Joining this round were new investor New World TMT and current investors Eight Roads Ventures China (formerly Fidelity Growth Partners Asia), F-Prime Capital (formerly Fidelity Biosciences) and WuXi Corporate Venture Fund. China Renaissance acted as the exclusive financial advisor for Adagene in this financing.

Company CEO and co-founder, Dr. Peter Luo, is a serial entrepreneur with deep expertise in antibody discovery and engineering. He previously co-founded Abmaxis, which was acquired by Merck in 2006, where he served as Merck’s Director of Biologics and Head of Antibody Engineering. He was also the first lead scientist at Xencor.

Adagene is utilizing its proprietary dynamic precision library technology (DPL) to drive discovery and development of pioneering new medicines. Adagene is creating a pipeline of innovative mono-specific and bi-specific antibody therapeutics focused on proven and challenging antigens for its internal pipeline, and for its collaborations with leading international pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in North America, Europe, and China.

The Series B funding will be used to advance multiple programs into clinical proof of concept, as well as to continue Adagene’s discovery efforts addressing unmet medical needs through differentiated therapies.

“Adagene is inventing innovative medicines in China for the world, and building a global brand by advancing the boundaries of antibody therapeutics,” said Dongmei Ji, Managing Partner of GP Healthcare Capital. “Adagene’s core focus of bringing novel solutions to bear on unmet medical needs, is central to our own investment focus of innovation driven companies with global reach.”

Edward Hu, CFO and Chief Investment Officer of WuXi AppTec and Managing Partner of WuXi Corporate Venture Fund added, “As a leader in driving the next generation of antibody therapeutics, Adagene has created a novel platform for mono-specific and bi-specific antibodies that target previously un-addressable and challenging antigens. The combination of speed and precision of the DPL platform has enabled Adagene to rapidly create a pipeline of novel therapies and ground breaking collaborations. Peter is the kind of entrepreneur WuXi Corporate Venture Fund likes to strongly support.”

“We are thrilled to see the progress at Adagene. Having formed the company alongside F-Prime and WuXi Corporate Venture Fund, we have witnessed impressive world class technology assembled under Peter’s and the core Adagene founding team’s guidance and truly unique expertise. This new round of financing will propel the company into strong validation of the power of the DPL platform across multiple business opportunities,” said Daniel Auerbach, Managing Partner, Asia, Eight Roads.

“We are extremely impressed by Adagene’s unique and sophisticated approach to truly innovative library design,” said Thomas Beck, M.D., Executive Partner at F-Prime Capital Partners. “We are excited to be involved with the founding of Adagene, which we believe is positioned to become an important and exciting China-based global discovery and product creation company.”

About Adagene

Adagene is a technology-driven therapeutic antibody company founded in 2011, located in Suzhou, China. Adagene’s discovery engine is advancing mono-specific and bi-specific therapeutic antibodies into development for its own internal pipeline and for its partners. The company is committed to bring novel antibody-based therapy to unmet needs by expanding the universe of addressable targets with an accelerated pace of therapeutic discovery and development.

About DPL

Dynamic Precision Library Antibody Technology (DPL) is the core to Adagene’s discovery and development of novel antibody-based therapeutics. DPL technology transforms the scope and precision of antibody therapeutics, endowing favorable attributes to the product profile and development process. The platform unifies, for the first time, the technology necessary for the generation and engineering of mono-specific and bi-specific antibody therapeutics.

About GP Healthcare Capital

GP Healthcare Capital, a subsidiary fund of GP Capital, is a professionally managed private equity fund which invests in disruptive technology and products within the healthcare industry. Our mission is to provide capital to innovative organizations with visionary leadership teams who are challenging the status quo of medicine as it is practiced globally.  We work closely with entrepreneurs to achieve our vision of a “Value Discoverer” and “Value Creator”.

About WuXi Corporate Venture Fund

WuXi Corporate Venture Fund is an investment arm of WuXi PharmaTech, a leading open-access R&D capability and technology platform company serving the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries, with operations in China and the United States.

About Eight Roads Ventures

Eight Roads Ventures (formerly Fidelity Growth Partners) is the venture arm of Eight Roads, the proprietary investment arm of Fidelity International Limited. As a private venture capital investor, Eight Roads Ventures is dedicated to long-term investment approach on ventures specialized in Healthcare and Biosciences, and Technology. A strong track record includes investments in Alibaba, WuXi PharmaTech, Innovent, Hua Medicine, Hile, etc.

About F-Prime Capital Partners

F-Prime Capital is a global venture capital firm investing in life sciences, healthcare and technology. Since 1969, F-Prime has worked closely with entrepreneurs and academics to create innovative solutions to some of the world’s most significant challenges in healthcare and technology. Successful prior investments include Accuri, Adaptimmune, Blueprint Medicines, Ironwood, and Ultragenyx.