Novalis closes €25m fund to invest in medtech and biotech start-ups

2 Jul 2021

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The Belgian venture capital investor has closed its second fund, the Novalis Biotech Acceleration Fund.

Venture capital firm Novalis, which seeds biotechnology and life sciences companies, will invest its latest €25m fund in medtech and biotech start-ups developing healthcare technologies.

Start-ups to benefit from the funding include those working in the areas of genomics, bioinformatics, drug research, manufacturing tools, diagnostics and personalised medicines.

Both new and returning investors have participated in the fundraising. The second fund investor base includes institutional investors, such as Participatie Maatschappij Vlaanderen (PMV), family offices and high-net-worth-individuals.

Novalis’s first fund was founded in September 2018 and totalled €4m, which was deployed into eight companies, mostly in Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

Jan Alexander, head of fund investments at PMV added: “With their first fund, Novalis has proven that they can create value with their hands-on entrepreneurial style and deep technological knowledge. We are convinced that, with the Novalis Biotech Acceleration Fund, they will continue to support innovation and valorisation of technology in the entrepreneurial ecosystem of the Flemish region.”

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The company typically invests early and focuses on capital-light ideas, where small investments can create significant value using software, IP, tools and other enabling technologies that can transform healthcare.

Novalis’s co-founder, Jan Van den Berghe, said: “Our success from fund one has been rewarded with the commitment from investors to significantly increase the size of the biotech acceleration fund and provide the flexibility for larger individual investments when needed.”

The company’s other co-founder Wim Van Criekinge commented: “Now more than ever there is huge interest in the ability for innovative technology to help provide a response to our growing healthcare needs. We believe the enabling technologies we identify and support early in their development will meet these growing needs.”

Novalis said it will continue leveraging its strong network in the Benelux region and plans to further extend its investments across Western Europe and the US.

For the moment, investments from the company’s second fund will be split between early-stage incubation projects and later stage acceleration projects.

Kjell Mortier, fund manager of Novalis’s second fund said that the investment strategy would endeavour to provide “hands-on support” and the “strong scientific and business foundations needed to enable start-up companies grow and succeed.”

Blathnaid O’Dea is Careers reporter at Silicon Republic

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