Source from PEdaily, Lepu Biotech (乐普生物) announced Series A financing of CNY 900 million (USD 131.1 million) on July 1, 2019. Shiyu Capital (拾玉资本) took the lead and Sumin Investment (苏民投), China Development Bank Capital (国创开元), Suzhou Shareate Group (苏州新锐), and Lepu Medical (乐普医疗) participated in the round.
Lepu Biotech was founded in 2018. Lepu Medical had invested Lepu Biotech, which made Lepu Biotech an internally-incubated program. Lepu Biotech dedicates to research and develop oncological precision treatment and targeted therapy and other new drugs.
From its official website, Lepu Biotech displays several pipelines including PD-1, PCSK9, and Adalimumab. PD-1 was claimed to enter the clinical trial phase I; PCSK9 applied for clinical trials; Adalimumab was ready to start the clinical trial. The period from basic research to pre-clinical is centered with risks but after that, the clinical trial is a starting point for a new thorny path. The overall success rate of the likelihood of approval (LoA) from phase I was around 9.6% during 2006 – 2015 given the data from Biomedtraker database.
The success rate determines the large input at the beginning, either monetary or human capitals. Hence, investments related to biopharmaceutical institutes are measured in hundreds of millions of dollars, even at an early funding stage. The latest valuation of Lepu Biotech was CNY 4.5 billion. Dated now, its Series A financing was recorded the most funded among peers for Series A round in 2019.
Said the Lepu Biotech Chairman Pu Zhongjie (蒲忠杰) and Shiyu Capital Founding Partner and Chairman Yang Hongbing (杨红冰), Lepu Biotech would concentrate on immunotherapy and precision treatment and develop into a leading league biotech company worldwide. With the new funding injected, Lepu Biotech planned to accelerate clinical trials, expand new drug pipelines, construct macromolecule product lines, and develop the team.
Shiyu Capital is founded in 2015 and manages fund of more than CNY 5 billion. It focuses on the biopharma/biotech area and so is its investment portfolio.