HK-based drug R&D platform Xuanzhu Biopharmaceutical nets $116m

Xuanzhu Biopharmaceutical, an innovative drug research and development subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Sihuan Pharmaceutical Holdings Group, has completed an 800-million-yuan ($116 million) Series A round of equity financing led by Chinese state-owned investment firm State Development and Investment Corporation (SDIC).

Hong Kong-based Xuanzhu Biopharmaceutical sold an 18.6 per cent equity interest in the deal, according to a statement on Monday. The company and SDIC plan to collaborate on innovative drug introduction and development following the transactions.

Founded in 2002, Xuanzhu Biopharmaceutical develops a pipeline of products that cover multiple therapeutic areas such as oncology, diabetes, metabolic diseases, digestive system, male reproduction, and anti-infection. It has built a pre-clinical R&D team of nearly 200 people across branches in the United States, Hong Kong and the mainland.

Its major products include Birociclib, a CDK4/6 inhibitor for advanced breast cancer, and Janagliflozin, an SGLT2 inhibitor for the treatment of diabetes. The former product has successfully carried out multiple clinical trials, while the latter has entered clinical phase III.

The company became an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Sihuan Pharmaceutical in 2012 and spun off in 2018 to operate as an independent entity with registered capital of 1.15 billion yuan ($116 million).

China’s pharmaceutical market, which represents the world’s second-largest market after America, is shifting from being primarily “generic” to “driven by innovation,” said Sihuan Pharmaceutical in the statement.

According to data from the China Association for the Promotion of Medicines, the number of annual clinical applications for category one chemical new drugs increased from 220 in 2016 to 381 in 2019, of which anti-tumour drugs accounted for 44.3 per cent.

Shares held by Xuanzhu Hong Kong, which owned all stake in Xuanzhu Biopharmaceutical, were diluted to 75.76 per cent after the investment,  Sihuan Pharmaceutical disclosed in a filing with the stock exchange on the same date.

SDIC was established in 1995 as a state-owned investment company in China. The firm has over 100 billion yuan ($14 billion) in accumulated assets under management (AUM), primarily investing in advanced manufacturing, technological innovations, life sciences, smart and new energy vehicles, information and communication technologies, among others.

Singapore Reporter/s

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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.