The Netherlands: Hard close for Forbion Growth Opportunities Fund at €360m

Sander Slootweg, managing partner and co-founder of Forbion

European life sciences venture capital firm, Forbion, has announced the final close of its Forbion Growth 1 Fund at €360m (US$428m). The fund is focused on investing in late-stage life sciences companies, particularly European companies that develop novel therapies for areas of high medical need. The hard cap exceeds the original target size of €250m.

Forbion uses three strategies that aim to provide: private growth capital for clinical stage development assets, cross-over capital to companies aiming to pursue a public listing in the near-term, as well as capital injections that support existing under-valued public companies. It plans to take a leading position in its targets with an investment size of up to €35m per deal.

A portfolio of 10-12 investments is envisaged in the most promising European late-stage life sciences companies. The Fund has already made three investments: SynOx Therapeutics (Ireland), New Amsterdam Pharma (Netherlands), and Gyroscope Therapeutics (UK).

“Since launching the fund, it has become even clearer that this European market segment of late-stage life sciences companies with de-risked assets is rapidly maturing, but remains under-served,” said Sander Slootweg, managing partner and co-founder of Forbion.

“The successful close of Forbion Growth I allows us to become a preferred partner for the most promising European biotech companies and ambitious management teams, and be an anchor investor in the final private financing round before an M&A or IPO exit,” said Dirk Kersten, general partner of Forbion Growth I. “We are looking to expand our current portfolio of three investments with new opportunities that can deliver meaningful benefits to patients whilst providing strong financial returns.”

In order to execute its strategy, the firm plans to expand its team of investment professionals with new hires expected to join by mid-2021.

Pantheon, Eli Lilly and Company, Horizon Therapeutics, the Belgian Growth Fund, New Waves Investments, Wealth Management Partners, KfW Capital and the European Investment Fund are part of a strong base of institutional LPs that supported the fund.

In executing its strategy, Forbion Growth I is working closely with its advisory group, consisting of CEOs from Europe’s leading BioPharma companies, comprising Jan van de Winkel (CEO Genmab), Tim van Hauwermeiren (CEO ArgenX), Werner Lanthaler (CEO Evotec), Onno van de Stolpe (CEO Galapagos), and Maarten de Jong, a leading Life Sciences banker with Moelis & Co.

Forbion has over €1.8bn of assets under management.