Aug’20 saw China’s lifescience sector receive more VC/PE investment than the USA for the second time ever in terms of monthly recorded amounts, with the first instance being in Apr’20. For Aug’20, China reported USD 2024m of venture capital investments, as compared to USD 1531m recorded by the USA.
China also reported 1 IPO of a pre-revenue R&D company, and 6 cross border strategic transactions involved in/out licensing transactions.
Counting the public fund raise as well, an aggregate of USD2.8B flowed into China’s lifesciences sector, on the back of USD3.8B in Jul20.
On a ytd basis, USD 7.2B of funding has flowed into Chinese companies, 2x of the same period in 2019.
Key Venture Capital transactions
JD Health, the healthcare arm of China’s JD.com, entered a deal to raise $830 million from Hillhouse Capital in a non-redeemable Series B preference share financing. JD.com said it will remain JD Health’s majority shareholder after the deal. JD Health is a digital health business, involving telemedicine, a Family Doctor service
Lepu Biotech is a Chinese biotech firm focusing on development of cancer diagnosis and therapy. The company, through its nine subsidiaries, has established a comprehensive industrial platform for target discovery, drug development, and drug production. Its core products PD-1, PD-L1, and several antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) products have entered into the clinical stage varied from stage I to stage III. The round was led by Riverhead Capital, Sunshine Insurance Group and Ping An Capital.
Founded in 2016, Sinovent is engaged in the technical development of biological medicines covering therapeutic areas like oncology, autoimmunity, infectious diseases and others. It operates out of Suzhou, Beijing, Shanghai, Boston in US and Sydney in Australia. The funding round was co-led by Loyal Valley Innovation Capital, and joined by Oceanpine Capital and Jiuyo.
The IPO seen in Aug’20 was from CanSino Biologics, which raised $748 million in an IPO on the Shanghai STAR exchange and climbed 88% in its first trading session. In March 2019, the vaccine company completed a $160.5 Million IPO in Hong Kong. CanSino, which is in the forefront of China’s drive to develop a COVID-19 vaccine, has announced a 5,000 person Phase III trial of the vaccine in Saudi Arabia.