Former Jefferies banker Zhu said to join I-Mab BioPharma ahead of planned IPO

Jielun Zhu, the former head of Asia health-care investment banking at Jefferies Financial Group Inc., is joining I-Mab Biopharma. Photo: Bloomberg

Jielun Zhu, the former head of Asia health-care investment banking at Jefferies Financial Group Inc., is joining I-Mab Biopharma Co. as chief financial officer, people familiar with the matter said.

In his new Hong Kong-based role, Zhu will focus on helping I-Mab with a planned initial public offering in the city, according to the people. The Chinese biotech firm aims to list as soon as the fourth quarter, the people said, asking not to be identified because the details are private.

I-Mab has attracted capital from some China’s most active private equity investors including Hony Capital, Hopu Investment Management and Hillhouse Capital. Hony led its $220 million Series C fundraising this year, while C-Bridge Capital Partners and Shanghai Tasly Pharmaceutical Co. led a $150 million round in 2017.

Zhu’s broader responsibilities at I-Mab will include corporate finance, strategy, business development, licensing and mergers and acquisitions, the people said. Zhu was a managing director at Jefferies since December 2015. Before that, he worked at Deutsche Bank AG and UBS Group AG, his LinkedIn profile shows.

Representatives for I-Mab and Jefferies declined to comment.

The Shanghai-based biologic firm was formed last year through a merger between Third Venture Biopharma and Tasgen, its website shows. A team led by I-Mab’s chief executive officer, Jingwu Zang, founded biologics firm Third Venture in 2015.

I-Mab, which develops antibodies to treat cancer and autoimmune diseases, is seeking partnerships with global drugmakers to help advance medicines for the Chinese market, its website shows.

Bloomberg

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.