Quaker Caps Oversubscribed Sophomore Fund

Quaker BioVentures, which invests in life sciences companies in the Mid-Atlantic region, says it has closed on $420 million for its second fund. It beat its target by $120 million.

The firm, based in the City of Brotherly Love, says it raised $280 million for its previous fund and invested in 24 companies.

Its prior fund has already had three liquidity events and has two more pending. Portfolio company Amicus Therapeutics Inc. (Nasdaq: FOLD) went public in May 2007, while Eximias Pharmaceutical Corp. was acquired in April 2006 and MedMark Inc. was bought in June 2006. Acquisitions are pending for portfolio companies BioRexis Pharmaceutical Corp. and Precision Therapeutics Inc.

Sherrill Neff, a Quaker founding partner, said in a prepared statement that the Mid-Atlantic area “continues to lag in the pace of life sciences venture investment, even though it is home to many of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, leading research institutions and government agencies.

In addition to Neff, the Philadelphia-based firm has five other partners: Brenda Gavin, Richard Kollender, Ira Lubert, Adele Cirone Oliva and Dr. Matthew Rieke. Oliva, formerly with Apax Partners, joined Quaker last year.

Quaker did not reveal the names of the limited partners in its second fund, but Thomson Reuters reports that the firm’s LPs include the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System and the Pennsylvania State Employees’ Retirement System.

Quaker’s second fund has already invested in five life science companies: Argolyn BioScience, Diasome Pharmaceuticals, EKR Therapeutics, Optherion, and Transave.