Mirae Asset co-leads $100 mn financing for China’s biotech startup

  • 2020-06-12

Mirae Asset Financial Group has invested $28 million in Shanghai-based biotechnology startup JW Therapeutics, about a quarter of $100 million financing it co-led with a Chinese investment company.

Mirae Asset Daewoo Co. Ltd., Mirae Asset Global Investments Co. Ltd., Mirae Asset Capital Co. Ltd. and Mirae Asset Venture Investment Co. Ltd. have participated in the Series B funding round for the clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, according to investment banking sources on June 11.

The South Korean group spearheaded the financing round in the whole process from deal sourcing to valuation, together with Chinese investment company CPE.

JW Therapeutics is a joint venture between Juno Therapeutics, a unit of Bristol-Myers Squibb and WuXi AppTec, a Chinese biotech firm. It develops cell-based therapy technologies to treat cancer.

The two shareholders backed the financing that brought the total capital raised by the startup to over $200 million, along with China’s CR-CP Life Science Fund and Chinese investment firm Oriza Holdings.

Its existing investors, including Sequoia Capital China, Singapore’s Temasek, Chinese private equity firm Loyal Valley Capital and US-based venture capital firm ARCH Venture Partners, also participated in the funding round.

JW Therapeutics plans to use the proceeds to advance a cell product in the second phase of clinical trials, build out a pipeline and establish commercialization capabilities to support product launch, it said in a statement released earlier this week.

Mirae Asset has been stepping up venture capital investments, including the purchase of a minority stake in China’s biggest ride-sharing company Didi Chuxing in 2018.

Its VC portfolio includes a $150 million investment in US meat substitute producer Impossible Foods Inc. and participation in a $23 million funding round for Indian food delivery platform Swiggy.

Earlier this year Mirae Asset Daewoo reported a 150% return on its $15 million investment in German biotechnology firm which it exited in nine months.

By Jung-hwan Jung

jung@hankyung.com

<Edited by Yeonhee Kim>