MISGAV, Israel–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Biond Biologics Ltd. (“Biond” or the “Company”), a privately-held Israeli biotechnology company, developing novel immunotherapies for cancer and autoimmune diseases, today announced the closing of a $17 million Series B financing.
Biond was founded in 2016 by the former scientific team of cCam Biotherapeutics, an immuno-oncology company which was fully acquired by Merck in July 2015. The former cCAM Biotherapeutics team was joined by additional veterans of the Israeli biotech industry, with the aim to build a strong, sustainable and innovative science-driven biotechnology company. The company’s vision and strategy are to bring innovative drugs to patients based on synergistic long-term collaborations with leading global companies in the immunotherapy field.
Biond intends to use the proceeds to move its lead drug candidate, BION-202, into clinical trials and to advance the preclinical development of BION-206 and its proprietary antibody cell-internalization technology.
The financing and due diligence were led by Israel Biotech Fund and Harel Insurance & Finance Group, with participation of Celgene Corporation, (NASDAQ: CELG), the Japanese-Israeli fund, SBI JI Innovation Fund and existing investors.
“We are excited to have such prominent investors as shareholders who are aligned with the company’s vision of delivering breakthrough immune-based solutions to patients with serious diseases,” said Dr. Tehila Ben Moshe, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Biond Biologics. “After two years of intense and creative discovery work, we are ready to advance our first innovative drug candidate into clinical trials.”
“We were very impressed by the innovative science discovered at Biond and by the quality and experience of its managerial and scientific team,” said Dr. David Sidransky, M.D., Co-Founder and General Partner at Israel Biotech Fund and Biond board member. “Biond’s novel pipeline candidates have the potential of becoming paradigm shifting therapies in immuno-oncology.”
“We are happy to support the outstanding management team at Biond and its cutting-edge pipeline and technology,” stated at Harel Insurance & Finance. “This investment aligns with the group’s ongoing effort of investing in breakthrough and innovative technologies developed by companies with great growth potential.”
About Biond Biologics
Biond Biologics is a drug discovery and development company focused on the field of immunotherapy, combining excellent science and out-of-the-box innovative thinking. Biond aims to translate high quality science into therapies for diseases with unmet medical needs by developing innovative drugs and establishing collaborations with leading pharma companies.
Biond’s in-house pipeline is based on internal research of newly discovered immune-checkpoints and immune-evasion mechanisms. Biond’s leading pre-clinical development programs include BION-202, a novel macrophage activator, and BION-206, a novel agent developed for overcoming a natural immune suppression mechanism, recently discovered by Biond’s scientists.
In addition to its pipeline of immunotherapy agents, Biond is developing an innovative and robust technological platform that will enable the internalization of biologic agents, mainly antibodies, into cells. Biond anticipates that its biologics internalization platform will feed its growing pipeline enabling the development of drugs aimed at the plethora of highly potent intracellular targets, currently regarded as being undruggable.
About Israel Biotech Fund
Israel Biotech Fund is a venture fund focused on at or near clinical-stage biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies with exceptional technologies or product opportunities. The Fund provides its portfolio companies not only with capital, but with executive talent, strategic, operational, and business development resources, enabling them to design and execute clinical development programs efficiently and successfully. The Managing Partners are joined by a group of top-tier biotech industry experts who act as venture advisors of the Fund and its portfolio companies.
About Harel Insurance & Finance Group
Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services Ltd. is Israel’s largest insurance and financial group. Harel Group is Israel’s leading and most dominant company in the field of health insurance with a market share of over 40 percent, with more than 80 years of insurance activity and more than 3 million insured parties. The group’s assets under management, in insurance, pension funds, provident funds, mutual funds and financial services, as of September 30, 2018, totaled over USD 65 billion.
About Celgene Corporation
Celgene Corporation, headquartered in Summit, New Jersey, is an integrated global pharmaceutical company engaged primarily in the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative therapies for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases through next‐generation solutions in protein homeostasis, immuno‐oncology, epigenetics, immunology and neuro‐inflammation.
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