Flex Pharma raises $40 mln from big investor group

Flex Pharma, a biopharmaceutical company focused on treatments for neuromuscular disorders, has raised $40 million from an investor group. Investors include Longwood Fund, Bessemer Venture Partners, EcoR1 Capital, Jennison Associates, Lightstone Ventures, Alexandria Equities, CD-Venture, Bindley Capital Partners, City Hill Ventures and several individuals including Steve Pagliuca, managing director at Bain Capital.

Press Release

Flex Pharma, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to creating innovative, novel treatments for neuromuscular disorders, announced today that it has raised $40 million in private funding from a number of blue chip public and private investors, including:

Longwood Fund
Bessemer Venture Partners
EcoR1 Capital
Jennison Associates LLC (on behalf of clients)
Lightstone Ventures
Alexandria Equities LLC
CD-Venture GmbH
Bindley Capital Partners LLC
City Hill Ventures
Richard Mark Beleson, retired SVP, Capital Research Company
Todd Dagres, Spark Capital General Partner
Richard Gibbs, Gibbs Capital Management
Daniel Gold, Managing Partner, Founder, CEO, QVT Financial LP
Wyc Grousbeck, Boston Celtics Managing Partner and CEO
Robert Steven Kaplan, Ph.D., Harvard Business School Professor
The Kraft Group
Peter S. Lynch, Trustee – The Lynch Foundation
John Maraganore, Ph.D., Alnylam CEO
Judy Pagliuca, Managing Partner, Pags Growth Capital
Steve Pagliuca, Bain Capital Managing Director, Boston Celtics Managing Partner
William Sahlman, Ph.D., Harvard Business School Professor
Diane and John Sculley, former Apple CEO & Sculley Family Office
Jonathan Seelig, Co-founder Akamai Technologies
Flex Pharma plans to further advance the science and its clinical candidates addressing neuromuscular disorders with this financing.

“We are very pleased to have Flex Pharma as part of our portfolio of investments,” said Steve Kraus, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners. “Flex Pharma’s unique approach to neuromuscular disorders offers an opportunity to develop new clinical agents to address an unmet need and rapidly create value. We look forward to working with Flex Pharma’s management team and our co-investors to build an exceptional new biopharmaceutical company.”

“We are thrilled to partner with excellent investors, including both top-tier venture capital and leading crossover funds,” said Flex Pharma Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Christoph Westphal, M.D., Ph.D. “Over the past year, Flex Pharma and our scientific founders have translated fundamental new science into human efficacy. We believe the caliber of Flex Pharma’s investors speaks to the strength of our science, and the hope that we may help individuals suffering from neuromuscular disorders.”

“Our early stage clinical studies have shown initial human efficacy related to muscle cramping in healthy volunteers,” commented Flex Pharma Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Company’s Scientific Advisory Board, Rod MacKinnon M.D., who won the 2003 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. “We are hopeful that we may be able to help individuals suffering from muscle cramps and other neuromuscular disorders.”

About Flex Pharma

Flex Pharma, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to creating innovative, novel treatments for neuromuscular disorders. Flex Pharma has demonstrated initial human efficacy related to muscle cramping in healthy volunteers. The Company plans to initiate efficacy studies in patients with neuromuscular disorders in the first half of 2015.

Flex Pharma was founded by National Academy of Science members Rod MacKinnon, M.D. (2003 Nobel Laureate) and Bruce Bean, Ph.D., recognized leaders in the fields of ion channels and neurobiology, along with Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Christoph Westphal, M.D., Ph.D. Flex Pharma is backed by the Longwood Fund, Bessemer Venture Partners, EcoR1 Capital, Jennison Associates, LLC and a number of additional blue chip investors.

Additional information about Flex Pharma is available online at http://www.flex-pharma.com.