Venture backers sell Thiakis for £100m

Advent Ventures and Imperial Innovations have sold Thiakis to US pharmaceutical company Wyeth. The £100m price tag depends on the progress of development of Thiakis’ flagship product, a drug to tackle obesity.

Advent Venture Partners has exited Thiakis, a company developing hormones for the treatment of obesity, in a sale to US listed pharmaceuticals group Wyeth.

The deal is worth up to £100 million (€105 million; $151 million), which includes an upfront payment of £20 million followed by additional potential milestone payments totalling £80 million depending on the progress of development of Thiakis’ obesity product.

TKS1225: fat fighter

Thiakis’ lead product, TKS1225, is currently being studied for the treatment of obesity and related conditions such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.

The business was founded in 2004 by Stephen Bloom, a professor from London’s Imperial College and John Burt, the former head of medical and life sciences at investment company Imperial Innovations.

Imperial Innovations, which is listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market, held a 23.7 percent stake in Thiakis and stands to make up to £22.2 million from the sale. Details of Advent Ventures’ returns were not disclosed.

Advent Ventures has in excess of £500 million under management and invests in biopharmaceuticals as well as in software and communications technology.