The sixth fund raised by San Francisco’s Sofinnova Ventures has been capped at $250 million (€200 million). The fund is larger than the firm’s previous $220 million fund and means it now has a total of $600 million under management.
In a statement, Sofinnova said it will target 25 companies – 90 percent of them based in America’s West Coast and ten percent in Europe – with an average investment of $8 million to $10 million per company. The fund will finance start-up and early-stage companies, two-thirds in biotechnology and one-third in information technology.
Within biotechnology, the firm focuses on drug development, platform drug discovery and medical device companies; while in information technology, it favours internet infrastructure, enterprise software, semiconductors, and telecom and wireless infrastructure.
The fund began investing in October 2003 and has already backed Orexigen, a developer of novel therapeutics for the treatment of obesity; Ascenta, a cancer therapeutics specialist; and Calient Networks, a provider of intelligent photonic switching systems and software.
The fund’s investor base includes: AGF; CalSTRS; Credit Agricole; Dow Employees Pension Plan; Glenmede; Scottish Widows; Wilshire Associates; and Venture Capital Management.
The original Sofinnova was founded in France in 1972 and became the first European venture capital firm to launch a US operation two years later. In 1997, Sofinnova split into two independent management teams: Sofinnova Partners in Paris and Sofinnova Ventures in San Francisco. While independent, the two firms share deal flow, expertise and information. They claim their relationship allows US portfolio companies to grow effectively into Europe, and vice versa.