China’s Qiming Ventures leads $42m funding for Abbisko Therapeutics

Abbisko Pharmaceuticals
Photo from Abbisko's website.

Shanghai-based Abbisko Therapeutics has closed a $42-million Series B funding round led by venture capital firm Qiming Venture Partners.

The funding round, which brought Abbisko’s total funding to date to $70 million, was joined by CICC Capital, Loyal Valley Capital, existing investors Lilly Asia Ventures and TF Capital Investments, and an undisclosed sovereign wealth fund.

Lilly Asia Ventures had led the company’s $28-million Series A round in 2017. According to the statement, Abbisko may need to seek financing again in about two years’ time.

Biopharma company Abbisko’s founding members previously held significant R&D leadership and management positions in several Fortune 500 pharmaceutical companies, including Novartis, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Eli Lilly, and AbbVie.

“Abbisko focuses on unmet needs of patients especially those of Chinese patients, follow international standards for new drug development, and dedicate itself to the research and development of innovative therapeutics with global intellectual property rights,” the company says on its website.

With the fresh funding, the biopharma firm said it intends to start Phase I trials of ABSK011 and ABSK021, its most advanced compounds, in the coming months. ABSK011 and ABSK021 are small molecule inhibitors of FGFR4 for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and CSF1R for solid tumours, respectively.

The company is initially focusing on developing therapies against clinically validated targets for indications that are prevalent in China, including HCC. It plans to eventually develop small molecules against novel targets.

Early this year, Qiming Venture Partners participated in a $55-million Series B round for Connect Biopharmaceuticals, a clinical-stage company focused on discovery and development of immune modulators for the treatment of auto-immune diseases.

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