TORONTO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Northleaf Venture Catalyst Fund (NVCF) today announced that it has made a $15 million lead commitment to Lumira Capital IV, a leading late-stage venture capital fund investing in high-potential biopharmaceutical and medical device companies. With the closing of this investment, Northleaf has completed the NVCF investment program, with a total of $300 million committed to a diversified portfolio of 13 fund investments and 11 direct investments.
“We are very pleased to be an anchor institutional investor in one of Canada’s top life sciences venture capital funds,” said Ian Carew, Director of Northleaf Capital Partners, which manages NVCF. “The commitment to Lumira represents NVCF’s final fund commitment and completes NVCF’s strategy of investing in best-in-class Canadian venture capital and growth equity funds, which in turn support the country’s most promising companies.”
NVCF’s commitment to Lumira extends a partnership that began in 2012, when the Northleaf-managed Ontario Venture Capital Fund (OVCF) made an investment in Lumira’s prior fund. The partnership was further strengthened through NVCF’s direct co-investment in 2015 alongside Lumira in Vancouver-based Zymeworks Inc., a leading biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery, development and commercialization of next-generation multifunctional biotherapeutics, initially focused on the treatment of cancer. In May 2017, Zymeworks successfully closed its initial public offering (IPO), the largest biotech IPO on a Canadian exchange in a decade.
“We are thrilled to have Northleaf as one of the lead investors in our fund and look forward to continuing our successful, long-term partnership,” said Peter van der Velden, Managing General Partner, Lumira Capital. “NVCF’s strong support will allow us to continue our successful strategy of investing in leading health and life science companies – all while delivering strong returns for our investors.”
Building on the success of OVCF (launched in 2008), Northleaf was the first fund manager selected under the Government of Canada’s Venture Capital Action Plan and NVCF was launched in early 2014. OVCF and NVCF have been widely acknowledged as innovative and successful partnerships that bring together government and private sector participants, and have delivered on their investment and public policy objectives. OVCF has generated very strong performance, and NVCF is generating impressive returns early in its lifecycle. Both funds are conclusively demonstrating the opportunity to produce attractive returns from Canadian venture capital investments while actively promoting the development of a sustainable, world-class venture capital ecosystem in Canada.
About Northleaf Venture Catalyst Fund
Northleaf Venture Catalyst Fund is a joint initiative between major Canadian institutional investors and the Governments of Canada and Ontario to invest primarily in Canada-based venture capital and growth equity funds and direct co-investments that support innovative, high growth companies. NVCF is structured as a fund of funds with the primary objective of generating attractive returns for its investors. The Fund is managed by Northleaf Capital Partners. For more information on Northleaf, visit www.northleafcapital.com.
About Lumira Capital
Lumira Capital leverages over 25 years of experience as one of North America’s leading healthcare and life sciences venture capital investors. The firm invests in biopharmaceutical, medical device, health IT and consumer health companies whose products deliver transformative improvements in the lives of patients worldwide. In addition to a longstanding presence in the U.S. with offices in Boston and San Diego, the firm continues to be the most active domestic health care investor in Canada, where it has offices in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. For more information, visit www.lumiracapital.com.