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.