HK-listed Lee’s Pharmaceutical unit nets $145m co-led by Hillhouse, TPG Asia

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Zhaoke Ophthalmology Pharmaceutical (ZKO), an indirect subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Lee’s Pharmaceutical Holdings Limited, has garnered as much as $145 million in its Series B round co-led by Hillhouse Capital’s Hillhouse COFL and TPG Asia, per a filing with the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong (HKEx) on October 11. 

The round was also joined by nine other investors including Shanghai-based Loyal Valley Capital, US healthcare investment firm OrbiMed Group and Aier Eye Hospital. The parties signed a share subscription agreement on October 9.

Following the deal, ZKO’s largest shareholder Lee’s Pharma stake will come down from 48.50 per cent to 34.10 per cent while Hillhouse and TPG will own 7.441 per cent each. Loyal Valley will also gain 4.039 per cent stake in ZKO.

The transaction is expected to be completed by January 31, 2021.

Set up in 1994 in Hong Kong, Lee’s Pharmaceutical is engaged in the therapeutic areas of cardiovascular and infectious diseases. In recent years, it has expanded its research and development efforts across ophthalmology, oncology, woman health, urology and dermatology. The company got listed on the main board of HKEx in 2010.  

ZKO was founded by Lee’s subsidiary China Ophthalmology Focus Limited in Hong Kong. It has partnerships with international companies such as US ophthalmic specialist IACTA Pharmaceuticals.

Lee is considering a possible spin-off and separate listing of shares of China Ophthalmology Focus, per its dated filing on July 9, 2020. China Ophthalmology Focus had closed a $50 million strategic investment from Lee Pharmaceutical’s Lee International and Wealthy Chance in May 2019. 

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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.