VANCOUVER, BC, TORONTO, ON & MONTREAL, QC-Versant Ventures has closed its newest fund, Versant Venture Capital VI, at a hard cap of CAD$538 million.
Fund VI was highly oversubscribed and was supported by existing and new limited partners including Canadian investors Teralys Capital, Northleaf Venture Catalyst Fund, HarbourVest Partners and Fonds de solidarité FTQ. The fund will invest in 20 to 25 biotechnology companies in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Versant expects to make its initial investment from the new fund in the first quarter.
“We are grateful to work with such high-quality limited partners who have demonstrated their commitment to and belief in our strategy, team and the overall potential of the healthcare sector,” said Versant managing director Brad Bolzon. “Versant has enjoyed unprecedented deal flow and outlier returns in recent years, and we believe we are well-positioned for continued success in both North America and Europe.”
Versant’s strategy has shifted to emphasize breakthrough innovation in the biotech sector and to take advantage of the firm’s broad global operating presence. Recent biotech acquisitions and IPOs in North America and Europe include Quanticel, Novira, Okairos, Clovis, CRISPR, Audentes, GenSight and several others.
Canada in particular has become a productive source for company creation and investment for Versant. Since 2013, Versant’s Canadian footprint has grown to include three Discovery Engines with research sites in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal, five fully backed biotech companies, two seed investments and 10 academic grants supported by the firm.
With the recent investments in BlueRock Therapeutics, Northern Biologics and Turnstone Biologics, Versant’s portfolio of Canadian-based biotech start-ups now has more than CAD$500 million in capital commitments from Versant, syndicate members and pharmaceutical partners.
Managing directors for Fund VI are Dr. Bolzon, Jerel Davis, Ph.D., Kirk Nielsen, Tom Woiwode, Ph.D., and CFO Robin Praeger.
“We are very pleased with how effectively Versant has transformed a very differentiated investment strategy into a strong portfolio that is delivering top-tier financial performance,” said Cedric Bisson, partner at Teralys and chairman of the Versant Limited Partner Advisory Committee.