Chinese pharma firm Nuance raises $181m co-led by GT Fund, RTW

Chinese specialty pharmaceutical firm Nuance Biotech has raised $181 million in a Series D round of financing to advance the R&D of the firm’s existing drug candidates and to explore new potential products.

The new round was jointly led by GT Fund, a state-backed private equity fund that invests in China’s cross-border companies in the healthcare, advanced manufacturing, and clean energy fields; as well as New York-based biopharma investment specialist RTW Investments, Nuance announced in a statement on December 8.

Previous investors Asia’s healthcare-dedicated investment firm CBC Group; Matrix Partners China, the China team of US-based Matrix Partners; and Swiss healthcare investor HBM Healthcare Investments, as well as new investors like Shanghai-listed pharmaceutical firm Konruns Pharma participated in the transaction.

Founded in 2014, Shanghai-based Nuance mainly develops drugs for the treatment of iron-deficiency anemia, postoperative pain management, and respiratory diseases. Besides its headquarters in Shanghai, the firm also has offices in other Chinese cities including Beijing, Guangzhou, Chengdu, and Shenzhen.

“This is an important milestone for Nuance, which reinforces our deep industry expertise and strategic business model,” said Mark Lotter, founder and CEO of Nuance, in the statement. “We are well-positioned to advance the clinical development of our robust therapeutics pipeline, and we look forward to bringing in more assets to China and building a leading presence in these key therapeutic areas.”

The firm closed a $35-million Series B round led by CBC Group in June 2018, and an $8-million Series A round from Matrix Partners China in 2017, according to its website. It did not disclose any information about its Series C round.

Nuance’s product candidates include CXD1010, an innovative small-molecule anti-tumour drug product that it jointly develops with UK-based global oncology firm Celleron. Nuance said that CXD1010 was granted a certificate for a clinical trial on human beings by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board of Hong Kong, the local statutory body, in February 2020.

Nuance is responsible for the development, production, and commercialisation of CXD1010 in Greater China and South Africa.

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

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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.