Shanghai Cell Therapy Group has secured nearly 500 million yuan ($76.6 million) in a Series D1 round of financing to advance its R&D, talent recruitment, and clinical trials of product candidates.
The investment was jointly led by China’s Jiuzhou Venture, which focuses on mid- to late-stage venture capital (VC), as well as private equity (PE) investments; financial services company CCB International; and Shanghai-based fund management firm Sun Rock Capital, which invests through a fund focusing on eastern China’s Yangtze River Delta Economic Zone.
Existing investor Haier Capital, an investment unit of Chinese home appliances maker Haier Group, continued to back the new round. Chinese investment bank CEC Capital served as the exclusive financial adviser of the deal.
Founded in 2013, Shanghai Cell Therapy Group has built a closed-loop industrial chain and an integrated platform for cell treatment and cell therapy. Targeting an ultimate goal of curing cancers and extending life expectancy, the firm provides services including cell storage, cell drug research, and cell clinical transformation with cell therapy as its core business.
Cell therapy is a procedure of transferring intact, live cells into a patient’s body to repair or replace dysfunctional cells in order to help lessen or cure a disease.
The global cell therapy market is expected to grow from $7.2 billion in 2020 to $7.82 billion in 2021 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.6%. By 2025, the market is estimated to reach $12.06 billion at a CAGR of 11%, according to market researcher The Business Research Company.
Headquartered in eastern China’s Shanghai City, the firm has branched out to set up entities across other cities and provinces, including Henan, Beijing, Zhejiang, Hainan, and Hong Kong. It is now building a cell production centre that is expected to complete by the end of April. The centre will have the capacity to manufacture CAR-T cells for 20,000 patients per year.
To date, Shanghai Cell Therapy Group owns 217 patents and 167 registered trademarks.
Prior to the Series D round, the firm closed 925 million yuan in a Series C round jointly led by Chinese insurer China Pacific Insurance, Haier Capital, and China Industrial Asset Management in December 2018.
In April 2016, it completed a Series B round at 185 million yuan, led by Legend Capital, an independent venture capital (VC) unit of conglomerate Legend Holdings. Chinese publicly traded mobile games developer Yaoji Technology invested 130 million in its Series A round in 2014.