Shanghai-based biopharmaceutical firm Harbour BioMed (HBM) on Thursday announced the completion of a Series C round of financing at $102.7 million led by Hudson Bay Capital, an asset management firm in New York and London.
The Series C round comes less than four months after HBM completed a Series B+ round at $75 million in mid-March, underlining the company’s ambition in speeding up the development of its portfolio for the treatment of next-generation biologics targeting cancer, immunologic diseases, and the COVID-19.
The new transaction was joined by New York-based healthcare investment specialist OrbiMed and Octagon Capital, a multi-stage investment manager specialized in public and private healthcare companies, according to a statement.
Country Garden Venture Capital (CGVC), an equity investment affiliate of Chinese property developer Country Garden Group, Chinese healthcare-focused equity investment firm GTJA Investment Group, Hong Kong-based investment manager Sage Partners, and existing investor Greater Bay Area Investment Fund, also poured money into the new round.
“We have made great progress with our clinical programs and multiple promising, bi- and monospecific antibodies from our discovery engine that are rapidly moving towards clinical trials,” said Wang Jingsong, founder, chairman and CEO of HBM, in the statement.
“The funding will support the final development and initial commercialization of our late-stage portfolio and advancement of both our earlier stage discovery and preclinical molecules,” said Wang.
HBM, with operations across China, the United States, and the Netherlands, currently has five products in clinical development. HBM has over 30 programmes in its pipeline.
Along with the Netherlands’s Utrecht University and Erasmus Medical Center, HBM recently announced a research collaboration with US biopharma firm AbbVie for a monoclonal antibody termed 47D11 for therapeutic/prophylactic use against the deadly COVID-19virus.
In August 2018, HBM closed $85 million in a Series B round led by Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC. The previous round saw participation from China Life Private Equity Investment Company and Vertex Ventures China, AdvanTech Capital, and Legend Capital.
Deal-making spike in biotech, healthcare
The Series C round comes as China’s biotech and healthcare companies are rising to become one of the most eye-catching sectors by collecting almost $1.17 billion from venture capital and private equity investors in May 2020, according to proprietary data compiled by DealStreetAsia.
While the healthcare and related industries have long been an investment hot spot in China due to the country’s ageing population and growing middle-class who could boost spending, the pandemic has undoubtedly accelerated the trend with Beijing channelling even more funds into the field.
An array of domestic healthcare and biotech firms have completed a new funding round in the past two months. Some of the more prominent deals include a $50-million investment into Stemirna Therapeutics, a startup that develops mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine candidates, Nanjing-based biotech firm Vazyme Biotech‘s $78-million Series C round, as well as the over-$1-billion Series B round into MGI Tech, an affiliate of Chinese genome sequencing giant BGI Group.