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09/2022 Portfolio

SUCCESSFUL EXIT VERSANTIS

We are proud and congratulate our portfolio company Versantis on its exit. French buyer GENFIT, a late-stage biopharmaceutical company, aims to strengthen its position as a leader in acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) through Versantis’ strong pipeline of a Phase 2 ready program based on first-in-class scavenging liposomes technology, a pediatric program focused on urea cycle disorder (UCD), and an early-stage program focused on hepatic encephalopathy (HE).

GENFIT pays CHF 40 million upfront and an additional CHF 65 million contingent on successful clinical and regulatory milestones, as well as one-third of the net proceeds from the potential sale of a priority review voucher, if awarded by the FDA.

More information in the press release under the following link.

09/2022 Portfolio

INITITAL INVESTMENT IN CORE SENSING

OCCIDENT invests in an innovative sensor technology for machine components and takes the lead for the Series A of 4.5M growth capital at core sensing.

The TU Darmstadt spin-off has found a sophisticated way to place smart sensors inside mechanical components, which in combination with intelligent algorithms provide valuable insights into machines, plants and commercial vehicles. This allows them to be digitized and thus operated more efficiently, potential problems to be detected at an early stage, expensive scrap and downtime costs to be avoided, and new digital business models to be implemented. The additional capital will primarily be used to bring the products into further applications and to scale the customer base.

More information in the press release under the following link
More about core sensing

09/2022 Portfolio

INITIAL INVESTMENT IN AVELO

OCCIDENT further strengthens its portfolio in the field of diagnostics and leads Avelo’s oversubscribed 2.2 million seed financing round.

The Zurich-based diagnostics startup develops a simple breath collector to improve the diagnosis of tuberculosis and other respiratory infections that cause pneumonia – the fourth leading cause of death worldwide. Physicians will be able to use this non-invasive sampling tool to painlessly collect a patient’s breath sample from the respiratory tract, particularly from the lower respiratory tract, and analyze it with existing PCR testing infrastructure for fast and accurate diagnosis.

More information in the press release under the following link.

More about Avelo

World Sepsis Day 2022
09/2022 Portfolio

Sepsis as an underestimated problem

On the occasion of World Sepsis Day on September 13 we would like to draw attention to this important and generally under­estimated problem. Very specifically, we would like to highlight the work of two of our portfolio companies, hemotune and Resistell. They show relentless commitment and great courage to research and bring to market the solutions of the future, which will have a great added value for patients.

Lukas Langenegger, CEO of hemotune, shares his thoughts:
“Sepsis is one of the main challenges for the global healthcare system. It affects nearly 50 million people every year and about 20% of all deaths are related to sepsis. In addition to the great suffering caused by each sepsis case, sepsis is also a major financial challenge. The combination of very high mortality rates and the health economics make sepsis an area of huge need, but also huge potential for innovation. We are convinced that sepsis can only be solved by precision medicine approaches. Our blood purification technology offers unique opportunities for this.”

Danuta Cichocka, CEO of Resistell, considers as follows:
“Most common infections such as pneumonia, urinary or skin infections can lead to sepsis. Sepsis is the most common pathway to death from infectious diseases. Nearly half of all sepsis cases occur among children, and nearly half of all severe sepsis survivors experience long term mental issues and physical disabilities, such as loss of organs or limbs. While bloodstream infections can be treated with antibiotics, effective and targeted antibiotic therapy is difficult in the absence of fast and reliable diagnostics. At Resistell, we are committed to providing very fast and reliable antibiotic susceptibility tests that improve patients’ care, and result in faster recovery and less complications.”

More about hemotune
More about Resistell

09/2022 Portfolio

TOP 100 SWISS STARTUP AWARDS

Once again, it was a fantastic Top 100 Swiss Investor Summit, culminating in an exciting Top 100 Swiss Startup Award ceremony. We are happy to see all three of our newest Swiss portfolio companies represented in the ranking. Congratulations to Resistell, hemotune and Invasight for this important recognition of your exceptional achievements and persistence over the past years.

Thank you Venturelab and all participants for this great event!

More about Resistell
More about hemotune
More about Invasight

07/2022 Portfolio

ADIVO ACHIEVES TWO MAJOR MILESTONES

Our portfolio company adivo, focusing on developing the next generation of species-specific targeted drugs for companion animals, has announced the achievements of two major milestones!

First, the company celebrates the commercial launch of its proprietary FELIX library, which enables the development of synthetic therapeutic monoclonal antibody therapies for cats. So far, targeted therapeutical options for cats are very limited and often not specifically designed for cats. Hence the innovative FELIX library targets a major medical need for cat owners and promises highly effective new therapy options with less side effects.

Second, adivo has announced the extension of its ongoing collaboration with one of the leading global companies in the animal health sector. While the original agreement covered several research projects for dogs, the extended partnership now also includes the joint discovery and development of therapies for cats.

More information in the press release under the following link.

More about adivo

06/2022 Portfolio

INITIAL INVESTMENT IN INVASIGHT

OCCIDENT extends its deep tech portfolio with another startup in the field of cancer therapies. In the oversubscribed CHF 4.5M seed financing round, OCCIDENT took the lead and is financing the next important development milestones with a strong syndicate.

Invasight is a Zurich-based preclinical stage biotech startup focusing on oncology, accelerating the development of targeted therapies with less side effects for patients with invasive cancers. The core of the company is the proprietary screening platform ACINDA®, which dramatically shortens the drug discovery and drug development process and enables the develop­ment of specific protein-protein interaction antagonists (PPIAs). The lead project F2i is a novel FGFR pathway inhibitor for the treatment of various invasive cancers, which sets new benchmarks in safety and efficacy.
 
More information in the press release under the following link.
 
More about Invasight

06/2022 team

OCCIDENT Team says "Bonjour Paris"

Our summer offsite this year brought us to Paris, where the teams from our two offices spent some exciting and entertaining days together.

After an amusing introduction at the cabaret “How to become a Parisian in one hour”, we explored the city in different ways via Segway tour and on foot, learned exciting things about the city and created our own perfume at a workshop. And of course, according to the French cliché, we enjoyed wonderful food every day.

Thanks to the entire team, it was a great few days away from the daily business routine!

06/2022 Portfolio

MK2 ANNOUNCES JOINT DEVELOPMENT PROJECT

mk2 Biotechnologies, WACKER and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) today announced their joint project for the development, large-scale production and purification of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) for various applications. The project aims to tackle the final steps towards the introduction of industrially applicable AMPs as a sustainable alternative to artificial preservatives.
 
Peptides are short amino acid chains that exhibit extraordinary properties. For example, antimicrobial peptides, which are also found in the human body, are effective against pathogens.
 
However, due to the complex synthesis and the resulting high prices, the potential of AMPs has remained largely untapped until now. To change this, the consortium is developing a scalable and cost-effective production platform based on microbial fermentation.
 
More information in the press release under the following link.
 
More about mk2

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