Sofinnova Partners, a Paris, France-based venture capital firm specialized in life sciences, held the first closing of its latest fund, Sofinnova Industrial Biotech I (Sofinnova IB I), at €106 million (US$112,7 million).
Limited partners in Sofinnova IB I included European institutions as the EIB and major international industrial players, from energy, chemical and agricultural sectors including several returning investors from the Sofinnova Green Seed Fund raised in 2012 in the same sector.
Since 2009, Sofinnova Partners has made a series of investments in the renewable chemistry sector, which helps the EU to respond to some of the major societal challenges identified as part of Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.
Sofinnova IB I will invest in start-ups along the value chain from the transformation of renewable raw materials, like agricultural waste or C02, to renewable end-products such as bio-plastics and other bio-sourced materials. It will also look at technologies coming from developments in synthetic biology. The investment strategy is based on a growing market demand for innovative, renewable products leveraging non-fossil raw materials and new technologies to produce better performing or cheaper, sustainable alternatives.
Sofinnova IB I will seek to invest in 8 to 10 companies during the next 3 to 4 years by leveraging a dedicated team, initially composed of Denis Lucquin, Managing Partner, Joško Bobanović, Partner, and Michael Krel, Principal.
Denis Lucquin, Managing Partner at Sofinnova Partners, said:
“We are very pleased with the success of this first closing. The experience accumulated since 2009 resonated well with the investors. With investments in the sector ranging from Avantium, developing an entirely bio-based plastic bottle and now planning an IPO on Euronext, to the most recent DNA Script, revolutionizing DNA synthesis, Sofinnova Partners stands as a pioneer investor, benefitting from an acute understanding of the dynamics at work in this emerging sector. With establishment of this entirely dedicated fund, we have reached today a further important step in our development in industrial biotech.”