Bliss Biopharmaceutical (Hangzhou) Co., Ltd. (“BlissBio”) announces the completion of over 400M CNY Series-B financing round. The financing was led by GL Ventures, the venture capital unit of Hillhouse Capital, with participation from Cormorant Asset Management, VMS Group, and Heda Biopharmaceutical Venture Capital. The Series B financing round was also supported by existing investors, Sherpa Healthcare Partners and Oriental Fortune Capital. CEC Capital Group acted as the exclusive financial advisor in the transaction.
Proceeds from the financing will be used to advance the international multi-site clinical studies of BB-1701, pre-clinical studies and regulatory submission of other projects in the pipeline, and construction of new R&D and manufacturing center. BB-1701, a new antibody-drug conjugate (ADC), is conducting Phase I clinical trial both in China and US. Its toxin Eribulin, licensed from Eisai, is an oncology product on the market with clinically proven safety and efficacy profiles. BlissBio has the global rights of development and commercialization of the ADC product BB-1701. Another Eribulin-ADC BB-1705 is expected to file IND application to the US FDA and China NMPA this year. Meanwhile, BlissBio has also developed a unique site-specific conjugation technology platform with independent IP protection. BlissBio is actively developing multiple best-in-class and first-in-class products with high potential.
“We are honored to be recognized by top investors in the biopharmaceutical field,” said Dr. Ziping Wei, Co-founder, Chairman, and CEO of BlissBio. “I really appreciate the unwavering supports from renowned investors and constant attention from existing investors， as well as the cooperation of all aspects from Qiantang New Area where we settle and domestic and foreign partners. With the strong support of financial investment, we expect to efficiently advance the development and commercialization of our investigational products, and to address the unmet medical needs.”
Andrew Ng, Managing Director of VMS Healthcare added: “Leveraging external collaboration and its globally competitive and proprietary R&D know-how to advance innovation in the field of antibody drug conjugate, BlissBio has become one of the most innovative biotech companies in China. We look forward to company’s clinical breakthrough providing new ADC therapeutic options to more patients. With the company’s pledged mission to improve human health using all available resources, we look forward to providing our full support to be a value-adding partner alongside in building this leading global biopharmaceutical.”
Talking about this round, as the lead investor of Series A round, Darren Cai, Founder of Sherpa Healthcare Partners commented, “The ADC field has experienced rapid advances in recent years and there are many companies competing to be at the forefront. We believe that with its strong team capability and outstanding technical advantages, BlissBio will surely stand out to become a leader in this whole industry in the future. The early clinical data obtained by the company have shown encouraging signals, and we have high expectation for the company's future success.”
“BlissBio team has global vision, extensive business development resources and rich experience in new drug development. The company efficiently obtained the IND approval of the first project in US within 18 months and subsequent approval in China.” noted Peijun Wang, Medical and Healthcare Service Investment Chief Partner of OFC - SME Development Fund (Shenzhen Nanshan limited partnership), “Being with the company from the beginning till now, we are very pleased to see that BlissBio has grown up to be a leading ADC development and commercialization company in China. Expecting to obtain differentiated advantages, BlissBio team fully evaluated the pros and cons of various ADC development technologies, and selected safer and more effective toxins, conjugation methods, competitive indications, and scientific clinical protocols. Embracing its ambition in industry, BlissBio is actively conducting business development and innovating more abundant pipelines to benefit more patients.”
Dr. Frank Zhang, Partner of CEC Capital, said: “BlissBio is a leading ADC player in China with innovative toxin and site-specific conjugation technology to ensure high druggability. We are really impressed by the seasoned team with effective execution. This round of financing was heavily oversubscribed and supported by lots of investors from domestic China, Hong Kong as well as ex-China, which is a testimony to Blissbio’s leading position and global competitiveness in the field of ADC. CEC Capital is pleased to serve as the financing advisor to Blissbio. We look forward to seeing future success in Blissbio’s pipeline development and hope it will benefit worldwide cancer patients soon.”
BlissBio, founded in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province in December 2017 by overseas returnees with PhD degree, is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on discovery, development, and commercialization of biotherapeutics with independent intellectual properties. BlissBio's core team has successful experience in product development and commercialization in this field, as well as a variety of technology platforms. With “Together, let’s improve human health” as the core value, BlissBio has close collaborations with domestic and foreign biopharmaceutical companies to develop internationally competitive BIC and FIC biotherapeutics.
About Hillhouse Affiliate GL Ventures
GL Ventures focuses on early-stage innovative companies in healthcare, software services, consumer Internet, emerging consumer brands and services. The GL Ventures team is passionate about partnering with visionary entrepreneurs to create industry leaders that stand the test of time. GL Ventures is the venture capital arm of Hillhouse Capital, and we have been investing with innovators across the world since 2005.
About VMS Group
VMS Group is a leading multi-strategy financial group, providing asset management (private equity, real estate and structured finance), brokerage and corporate finance advisory services. VMS Private Equity specializes in growth capital, with a focus on China-related investments in healthcare, technology, media, telecom (TMT) and consumer sectors. VMS healthcare practice focuses on the next innovative companies around the globe that could resolve unmet clinical needs across medical treatment, diagnosis and general health management. As of today, VMS Group has successfully completed more than 100 investments both onshore in China and offshore around the world since inception and currently manages in excess of USD 3.8 billion in total assets.
About Sherpa Healthcare Partners
Sherpa Healthcare Partners (“Sherpa”) was founded in 2018, the founders previously worked together in one of China’s leading venture capital firms, built and led its professional medical investment team since 2011, set up the dedicated healthcare investment fund and responsible for healthcare investment. The founders have been teamed together in close co-operation, built on shared values, mutual trust, and complementary capabilities. Sherpa has now become an influential healthcare VC firm in the industry. Sherpa has invested in leading companies in many key areas, such as Pharma, GeneTech, MedTech and Medical services. From 2011 to 2020, the team has gone through 4 vintage year cycles of multiple U.S dollar funds and RMB funds and made 100 investments. Sherpa has the honor to work with many outstanding entrepreneurs and grow together with them.
About OFC - SME Development Fund (Shenzhen Nanshan limited partnership)
SME Development Fund (Nanshan) is directly funded by China SME Development Fund Co., Ltd., and jointly funded by Shenzhen Guiding Fund, Shenzhen Nanshan District Guiding Fund, SPD Bank, CCB life, Vanke, Shanxi Securities, etc. Shenzhen OFC-SME Development Fund Equity Investment Management Co., Ltd. is controlled and managed by OFC, and is serving as GP of SME Development Fund (Nanshan). The Fund mainly focuses on the emerging industries according to the national strategy, such as biomedicine, semiconductor, artificial intelligence, information security, enterprise service, etc.
About CEC Capital Group
CEC Capital is a leading boutique investment bank with a core focus on advising on private placement transactions and cross-border M&A in the healthcare, TMT and consumer retail sectors. The team of investment bankers are uniquely positioned to provide expertise in advising on cross-border M&A and private placement transactions involving the Asia-Pacific region. CEC Capital is able to provide clients with access to institutional investors and corporate acquirors across the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific regions, with a particular focus on Greater China, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, and MENA.
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