STRASBOURG, France & MONTREAL--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Domain Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company specializing in the research and development of innovative drugs targeting G Protein-Coupled Receptors (GPCRs) in immuno-oncology, announced today the closing of a US $42m (€39m) series A financing round co-led by Panacea Venture, CTI Life Sciences and 3B Future Health Fund, and joined by adMare BioInnovations, Schroders Capital, Omnes, Turenne Capital, Theodorus, Viva BioInnovator and existing investor Seventure Partners.
This investment is a significant step forward for the French-Canadian company as it seeks to bring novel therapeutic solutions to cancer patients, aimed at bypassing immunosuppression mediated by GPCRs. Domain Therapeutics will use the proceeds of this financing to i) conduct the clinical development of its EP4R antagonist, DT-9081, ii) advance two additional GPCR programs, including an anti-CCR8 antibody, to the Investigational New Drug application stage, and iii) progress its discovery-stage pipeline of a number of first-in-class assets targeting GPCRs, identified through its proprietary platforms.
“We are pleased to welcome our new shareholders and I thank them all for their commitment at this decisive stage of our company’s growth,” comments Pascal Neuville, CEO of Domain Therapeutics. “After having delivered a first GPCR drug candidate for immuno-oncology together with Merck KGaA, Domain is now committed to advance its own treatments reviving the immune system to defeat cancer.”
With the expansion of immune checkpoint inhibitor treatments and the understanding of how tumors highjack and escape the immune system, even under immunostimulating treatments, GPCRs have recently emerged as strategic targets responsible of immunosuppression and treatment-resistance mechanisms. Domain Therapeutics is leveraging its insights into GPCR science and technology to develop a robust immuno-oncology pipeline designed to harness the power of immunity and to broaden the impact of immunotherapies. In addition, Domain Therapeutics scientists are hunting for biomarkers, tissue microarray data, genetic mutations and protein expression to select patients who will benefit most from its immunotherapy treatments.
“Panacea Venture foresees in Domain Therapeutics an outstanding potential in terms of value creation in the near future by leveraging the promise of GPCRs to deliver innovative immunotherapies,” adds James Huang, Founding Managing Partner of Panacea. “We look forward to contributing to the success and the development of the company.”
“We are very proud to co-lead this strategic financial round to support Domain Therapeutics capabilities to innovate and transform the company into a clinical-stage biotech.” mentions Laurence Rulleau, Managing Partner at CTI Life Sciences. “The presence of Canadian investors in this Series A reinforces the footprint of Domain in Montreal and will increase the visibility of the company in North America for future financing and clinical development.”
“Domain Therapeutics has a unique positioning in GPCR-mediated immunoresistance. The combination of two decades of expertise in GPCR drug discovery and the development of the oncology franchise over the last years holds great promise to deliver innovative immunotherapies to patients and to address high unmet medical needs,” remarks Roberto de Ponti, Managing Director and General Partner of 3B Future Health Fund. “We are delighted to support Domain Therapeutics high-performing management team in transforming a comprehensive portfolio of programs into cancer treatments.”
The Board of Directors of Domain Therapeutics is now composed of : James Huang (Director, Panacea Venture), Laurence Rulleau (Director, CTI Life Sciences), Roberto de Ponti (Director, 3B Future Health Fund), Emmanuel Fiessinger (Director, Seventure Partners), Youssef Bennani (Chairman of the Board of Directors), Sylvie Ryckebusch (Independent Director), Pascal Neuville (Director and CEO), Katherine Cohen (Observer, Panacea venture), Frédéric Lemaître Auger (Observer, adMare BioInnovations), Erwin Boos (Observer, Schroders Capital) et Guillaume Blavier (Observer, Omnes).
Advisors involved in this operation
Advisors of the company:
- Bird & Bird (Paris, France) : Emmanuelle Porte (Partner) and Claire Tanguy (Associate).
Advisors of investors:
- BCF (Montreal, Canada): Gino Martel, Julien Lefebvre (Partners), Luka Pavlovic (Associate);
- Jones Day (Paris, France): Geoffroy Pineau-Valencienne (Partner) and Jeanne Plé (Associate) ;
- Chammas & Marcheteau (Paris, France): Jerôme Chapron (Partner), Pauline Vigneron (Associate) ;
- Taylor Wessing (Paris, France): Nicolas De Witt (Partner) ;
- McDermott Will & Emery (Paris, France): Emmanuelle Trombe (Partner), Laetitia de Dinechin (Associate).
Advisors of the company:
- Vossius & Partner (Munich, Allemagne) : Oswin Ridderbusch (European Patent Attorney);
- Lavery Avocats (Montreal, Canada): Alain Dumont (Partner).
Advisors of investors:
- Goodwin Procter LLP (Boston, United States): Theresa C. Kavanaugh (Partner).
Advisors of the company:
- Agile Capital Markets (Paris, France) : Eric Cohen (Managing Director), Michael Khayat (Associate) ;
- CenPonts Healthcare (Paris, France) : Xianding Ma (Partner), Jinlong Yue (Executive Director).
About Domain Therapeutics
Domain Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company operating in France and Canada, is dedicated to the discovery and development of new drug candidates targeting G Protein-Coupled Receptors (GPCRs), one of the most important classes of drug targets. The company focuses on developing high-value drug candidates to tackle GPCR-mediated immunosuppression in immune-oncology.
About Panacea Venture
Panacea Venture is a healthcare focused venture capital firm, with offices in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Silicon Valley. Founded in 2017, Panacea Venture focuses on investing in and incubating early-stage life science companies with breakthrough technologies and discoveries that can potentially address unmet medical needs and enhance the quality of life on a global scale.
About CTI Life Sciences
Based in Montreal, CTI Life Sciences Fund L.P. was created in 2006. The firm makes venture capital investments mostly in innovative high-quality biotech companies at the pre-clinical and clinical development stages, in North America, and primarily in Canada. With the recent first close of its third mandate, CTI Life Sciences Fund manages $345 million of assets.
About 3B Future Health Fund
3B Future Health Fund II S.C.A. SICAV-RAIF is a Luxembourg based investment fund with focus on early-stage investment opportunities in Europe and the U.S in areas of high unmet patient need, mainly oncology and rare disease therapeutics. The Fund is the second investment fund sponsored by Riccardo Braglia, Group Vice-Chairman and Board Member of 3B Future Holding SA, Switzerland (formerly Helsinn Holding Group) and Chairman and General Partner of 3B Future Health Fund I and II, Luxembourg.
About adMare BioInnovations
With a wealth of scientific discovery, Canada is primed to be a global leader in life sciences. To realize this potential, adMare uses its scientific and commercial expertise, specialized R&D infrastructure, and investment capital to build investable companies, robust ecosystems and industry-ready talent – and re-invests its returns back into the Canadian industry to ensure it is sustained for the long-term.
About Schroders Capital
Schroders Capital is a leading global private markets investor and part of Schroders Group. With over USD 70 billion assets under management, the firm manages a range of investment strategies, including private equity, private debt, real estate, infrastructure, securitised products and asset-based finance, insurance-linked securities and impact investing on behalf of institutions, consultants, family offices and individual investors. Schroders Capital operates out of 19 offices globally and employs over 500 professionals, combining global market coverage with local, on-the-ground presence. The private equity team of Schroders Capital provides its clients access to a broad range of private equity opportunities through direct, co-investment, secondaries and primary investments across buyout, growth and venture capital with a focus on fundamental value generation through transformational change. Sustainability is an integrated part of the firm’s investment process and Schroders Capital is rated A+ by the UNPRI.
Omnes is a leading private equity and infrastructure investor. With over €5 billion in assets under management, it provides companies with the capital they need to fund their growth, in three key areas: venture capital, growth & buyout capital and infrastructure. Omnes is wholly owned by its employees. It is committed to ESG factors and has founded the Fondation Omnes to fund initiatives in favour of children and young people. It is a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).
About Turenne Capital
Created in May 2014, Sham Innovation Santé is an investment structure specializing in health innovation capital and is controlled and owned by Sham, a mutual insurance company specializing in the risk management of health, social and medical players. Sham is the leading French player in medical civil liability. Advised by Turenne Santé (Health Center of Turenne Group), Sham Innovation Santé's mission is to support the growth and development phases of innovative companies in the health sector.
Turenne Group, one of France's leading private equity firms, has been helping entrepreneurs for 20 years with their projects for innovation, development, and the transmission of their companies. As an independent player, the group manages €1,4 billion in assets. Its teams of 70 professionals, including 56 investors, based in Paris, Lille, Lyon, Bordeaux, Marseille, Nice and Metz, support 200 business leaders in the sectors of healthcare, hotels, new technologies, distribution and innovative services. With more than €300m, our healthcare team (Turenne Santé) invests across the entire value creation chain for healthcare companies through various investment approaches.
Theodorus Funds are venture capital funds dedicated to early-stage tech investments. It invests mostly in Biotech, MedTech & AI companies with proprietary technologies. Besides its financing role, Theodorus also plays an active role in the development of its portfolio companies, guiding the company towards its success. Today, Theodorus holds 70M€ of assets under management, which helped fund >40 companies and create >700 M€ in value. Theodorus has offices in Montreal and Brussels.
About Viva BioInnovator
As the investment division of Viva Biotech, Viva BioInnovator is dedicated to investing globally in biotech innovation with novel solutions to unmet medical needs across multiple therapeutic areas, ranging from biopharmaceuticals to devices, diagnostics, and life science tools. By leveraging Viva Biotech's deep experience and technical advantages in novel drug R&D, Viva BioInnovator provides both cash and in-kind services, also called Equity-for-Services (EFS), for its investments.
About Seventure Partners
Seventure Partners is a long-term equity investor that actively supports innovative companies aiming at generating positive impact on humankind, society, sustainability and the planet. With €900m net commitments as of end 2021, Seventure is a leading venture capital firm in Europe backing high growth potential companies since 1997 in 2 main areas: 1) Life Sciences: biotech, health & digital Health, nutrition, foodtech, blue economy, aquaculture, animal & agriculture, sport & wellness with a specific interest for microbiome-related innovations across Europe, Israel, Asia and North America; 2) Digital Technologies in Western Europe.
Seventure promotes the development of companies from inception (seed, venture) to later stage (growth, crossover, IPO) with deployed capital ranging from €500k to €10m per round and up to €20m per company. With Health for Life Capital™ funds (€160m and €250m commitments respectively in 2 vehicles) and its co-investment funds, Seventure is a worldwide leader in microbiome investments with more than 20 microbiome companies in its portfolio to date.