The Year HealthTech Grew Wings
Fasten your seatbelts and prepare for takeoff. We’re flying to the moon! 🎧
As we (virtually) ring in 2021 and reflect on the challenging year behind us, the ripple effects of COVID-19 continue to unfold around the world. The long-term implications of this crisis are nearly impossible to predict. Yet this much is clear: this pandemic has accelerated the convergence of healthcare and technology more so than ever before. With that, aMoon has experienced quite the formative year. We’re excited to share our recent news with you.
Snapshot from Growth:
For the holidays… we asked for a Unicorn, now we have two!
>Seer (NASDAQ: SEER) raised $336M and topped $3.5B in valuation this month in an oversubscribed IPO, a testament to the strength of Seer’s management team and its intrepid ambition to transform medicine. And, in other “unicorn” news, our California-based stealth company raised a funding round of $150M at a post money valuation of $1.35 billion. Stay tuned for the reveal…
> Adicet Bio (NASDAQ: ACET), which is focused on oncology cell therapy, completed a successful reverse merger in September and commenced trading on Nasdaq. Marking a new chapter for Adicet, as they evolve and progress their cancer research products.
> Viracta Therapeutics, a precision oncology company targeting virus-associated malignancies, announced a definitive merger agreement with Sunesis Pharmaceuticals last month. When the merger closes, Viracta will become a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ under the ticker VIRX. Viracta also presented promising Phase 2 data at ASH 2020 this past week.
> Ayala Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AYLA), successfully completed an IPO in early May. A clinical-stage precision oncology company focused on developing and commercializing small molecule therapeutics for patients suffering from rare and aggressive cancers, primarily in genetically defined patient populations.
Going for an M&A
> Cartiheal which develops cell-free, off-the-shelf implants for the treatment of cartilage and osteochondral defects, signed a definitive agreement for a potential acquisition by Bioventus upon meeting regulatory milestones. The deal epitomizes Israel’s innovative and groundbreaking technological engine and its potential to improve medical outcomes for millions of patients.
Scientific breakthroughs in BioPharma
> BioPharma transactions highlight a large unmet need, outstanding teams, and leading strong syndicates. We invested in three stellar, disruptive BioPharma companies which are worth following: MiNA Therapeutics in the UK, AltruBio out of Taiwan and California, and Viracta Therapeutics also from California.
Velocity: accelerating early disruption
> We welcomed Satellite Bio, an early-stage life sciences company leading the development and implementation of proprietary, off-the-shelf, implantable artificial liver and other satellite organs as living therapeutic solutions that can transform the lives of millions of patients who suffer from liver diseases. Brought to you from the award-winning labs at MIT, Harvard, Penn, and BU, the platform is supported by a strong IP portfolio and pre-clinical proof of concept.
> Ibex, a pioneer in AI-based cancer diagnostics, hit an important milestone by announcing a new partnership with Maccabi and KSM, in the world’s first deployment of AI for primary diagnosis of breast cancer. It is a formative achievement for a company that continues to transform digital pathology and save the lives of breast cancer patients.
From our Launchpad 🚀
> Introducing aMoon Alpha, our in-house team dedicated to strengthening our portfolio company’s execution capabilities and unlocking additional value creation opportunities. By leveraging our internal capabilities, scale and global network, we don’t simply hope for the best, we deliver it. Led by Dr. Yaron Daniely, the team is working closely with our 42 portfolio companies. Grab some popcorn and watch more here.
> mRNA is all the buzz right now. Luckily we have people like Dr. Gur Roshwalb in-house who can distill the science down for us. As a trained MD and Managing Director at aMoon, Gur was interviewed this month by Calcalist to shed some light on the COVID-19 vaccine.
> COVID-19 has fueled interest in under-valued niche categories of the healthcare industry, such as life-science tools and diagnostics (LST&D). aMoon Partner Todd Sone shares his thoughts on the dawn of the Omics era and the emergence of the LST&D industry here.
> We’re taking a much closer look at gene therapy. We’re excited about this because after two decades of attempts and slow starts, gene therapy has finally achieved success with 9 products approved between the US and EU, with many more to come. The essential breakthrough has come about through the discovery of a safer, targetable delivery system known as adeno-associated viral vectors (AAV). While AAV has various limitations, it has finally allowed scientists to reproducibly target simple monogenic diseases in a predictable fashion, ushering in this new era of practical gene therapy. Stay tuned as we have more insights and updates to share about this space in 2021.