A portfolio company of Seaya Ventures’ González is poised to become publicly traded

From our Women's PE Briefs - week commencing June 7, 2021

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Galili’s UpWest Labs has a portfolio company file to go public

UpWest Labs, which was co-founded by Shuly Galili, has a portfolio company file to go public. SentinelOne, a software security company, is seeking to raise $100 million and list on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol S.

SentinelOne has more than 4,700 customers and generated $112 million in sales for the 12 months ended April 30. SentinelOne’s board includes Charlene Begley, a former executive with GE.

UpWest’s holdings in SentinelOne were not disclosed in the filing, but the firm was the first investor in the Mountain View, Calif. company. Insight Venture Partners is the largest shareholder with a 15.73 percent pre-IPO stake, while Tiger Global has 12.4 percent and Third Point Ventures has 11.25 percent.

Shuly, who founded and ran the California-Israel Chamber of Commerce for 11 years, created UpWest with Gil Ben-Artzy, who previously worked at Yahoo, first in corporate development and then as vice president of operations management. UpWest focuses on helping Israeli startups grow in the United States. It has raised three funds, totaling $27 million – including an $18 million fund closed in 2018. Earlier this year, UpWest seeded Balance, which is seeking to transform the online payments experience for business-to-business companies.

Dinu’s GigCapital4 has agreed to merge with BigBear.ai

A special purpose acquisition company co-founded and led by Raluca Dinu has identified a company to bring public. GigCapital4, Inc., which went public in February, has agreed to merge with BigBear.ai, a developer of a data analytics platform for the defense, intelligence, and commercial sectors. The transaction values BigBear at approximately $1.57 billion and will provide it with approximately $330 million in net cash. The Columbia, Md. company will trade on Nasdaq. GigCapital4 is projected to have 2021 revenue of $182 million. It is backed by AE Industrial Partners. Existing shareholders are expected to own approximately 73 percent of the combined company after the offering.

Raluca, who is CEO and chair, co-founded the SPAC with her husband, Avi Katz, who previously co-founded and led GigPeak, which was acquired by Integrated Device Technology. Raluca previously held executive roles with GigPeak and Integrated Device Technology’s Optical Interconnects Division.

Avi and Raluca have also been involved with six prior SPACs. In addition to GigCapital4, GigInternational1 went public in 2021. Two others, GigCapital5 and GigCapital6, are in registration to go public. Dorothy Hayes is on the board of all four SPACs. She is the former corporate controller and chief accounting officer of Intuit. Raluca was also on the board of GigCapital3 which went public in May 2020 and recently merged with Lightening eMotors, and is CEO and chair of GigCapital2 which went public in June 2019 and has pending merger agreements with UpHealth and Cloudbreak Health. The first GigCapital SPAC merged in November 2019 with Kalyera.

LegalZoom.com files to go public

LegalZoom.com, a company that Mary Meeker led former firm Kleiner Perkins into and whose board includes Francisco PartnersChristine Wang, files to go public. The Glendale, Calif. company is seeking to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol LZ.

LegalZoom provides legal and compliance solutions, including compliance and tax advice and filings, trademark filings and estate plans. It had $499 million in revenue for the 12 months ended March 31.

Christine, a principal with Francisco Partners, joined LegalZoom’s board in September 2019. She is also on the boards of Quest Software, LogMeIn and MyFitnessPal, whose CEO is Tricia Han. The ownership stake of Francisco Partners and the other investors was not disclosed in the filing.

In addition to Francisco and Kleiner Perkins, other investors in LegalZoom include Institutional Venture Partners and TCV. Mary left Kleiner Perkins in 2018 to form BOND.

Elevation Oncology is seeking to raise $100M and list on Nasdaq

A company whose backers include Bihua Chen’s Cormorant Asset Management and whose board includes Vertex VenturesLori Hu files to go public. Elevation Oncology is seeking to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol ELEV. Based in New York, Elevation is developing monoclonal antibodies for genetically-defined cancers.

Lori, a managing director with Vertex, has served on Elevation’s board since July 2019. She is also on the boards of Palleon Pharmaceuticals, BlackThorn Therapeutics and Kona Medical, Inc. and is an observer on the boards of Ivantis, Inc. and Moximed.

Vertex owns 12.4 percent prior to the offering as does Qiming Venture Partners. Cormorant owns 12 percent as does venBio. The largest shareholder prior to the offering is Aisling Capital, which has a 16 percent stake.

Cormorant has at least four other companies in registration: Artiva Biotherapeutics, Inc., Ambrx, Inc., GH Research Ireland, Ltd. and Graphite Bio, and another, Tango Therapeutics, which is set to go public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company. Tango’s CEO is Dr. Barbara Weber.

Cormorant has also had at least nine companies go public in 2021: Centessa Pharmaceuticals; Rain Therapeutics, Inc.; VectivBio Holding; Biomea Fusion; Prometheus Biosciences, Inc.; Design Therapeutics; Edgewise Therapeutics; Pharvaris, which Anne Lesage co-founded; and Talaris Therapeutics, Inc., which was founded by Dr. Suzanne Ildstad.

Graphite Bio files to go public and list on Nasdaq

Graphite Bio, a next-generation gene editing company whose scientific co-founders include Dr. Maria Grazia Roncarolo and which Bihua Chen’s Cormorant Asset Management backed earlier this year, files to go public. The South San Francisco, Calif. company is seeking to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol GRPH.

Graphite Bio is focused on targeted DNA integration to precisely insert genetic payloads to treat a variety of severe diseases. Rather than attempting to knock out or randomly integrate genes, Graphite Bio is focused on correcting defective genes by high-efficiency site-specific integration of new genetic sequences. It has received IND clearance from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to initiate its first Phase 1/2 clinical trial, evaluating its lead candidate in sickle cell disease.

Maria is at Stanford University where she is a professor in stem cell and regenerative medicine, a professor of pediatrics and of medicine, the director of the Center for Definitive and Curative Medicine, and the co-director of the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. Her earlier work at the San Raffaele Scientific Institute in Milan led to the first approved gene therapy, Strimvelis. Maria is one of two scientific co-founders of Graphite. The other is another Stanford professor, Dr. Matthew Porteus.

Graphite Bio’s board includes Dr. Kristen Hege, a senior vice president at Bristol Myers Squibb; Smital Shah, chief business and financial officer at ProQR Therapeutics NV; and Jo Viney, co-founder and chief scientific officer of Pandion Therapeutics, Inc.

The company raised $45 million in Series A financing last fall from Versant Ventures and Samsara BioCapital and then in March Cormorant joined Versant and Samsara in a $150 million round that included a group of investors including RA Capital Management, Rock Springs Capital, Deerfield Management, Federated Kaufmann Fund, Fidelity Management & Research Company, Janus Henderson Investors, Logos Capital, OrbiMed, Perceptive Advisors, Surveyor Capital and Venrock Healthcare Capital Partners.

The ownership stakes of investors were not broken out in the filing, but Versant and Samsara are each listed as owning more than 5 percent.

Cormorant has at least four other companies in registration: Artiva Biotherapeutics, Inc., Ambrx, Inc., GH Research Ireland, Ltd., Elevation Oncology and another, Tango Therapeutics, which is set to go public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company. Tango’s CEO is Dr. Barbara Weber.

Cormorant has also had at least nine companies go public in 2021: Centessa Pharmaceuticals; Rain Therapeutics, Inc.; VectivBio Holding; Biomea Fusion; Prometheus Biosciences, Inc.; Design Therapeutics; Edgewise Therapeutics; Pharvaris, which Anne Lesage co-founded; and Talaris Therapeutics, Inc., which was founded by Dr. Suzanne Ildstad.

GH Research Ireland, Ltd. files to go public

Another company that Cormorant backed this year, GH Research Ireland, Ltd., also filed to go public. The Dublin company is seeking to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol GHRS. GH is developing a drug for treatment-resistant depression.

Earlier this year, Cormorant participated in GH’s $125 million Series B round that also included RA Capital, RTW Investments, Acuta Capital Partners, Boxer Capital, Deerfield Management Company, Logos Capital, Surveyor Capital, Venrock Healthcare Capital Partners, Verition Fund Management and existing investors BVF Partners. The ownership stakes of the investors were not disclosed.

Cormorant has at least four other companies in registration: Artiva Biotherapeutics, Inc., Ambrx, Inc., Elevation Oncology and Graphite Bio, whose scientific co-founders include Dr. Maria Grazia Roncarolo. Cormorant also has another company, Tango Therapeutics, which is set to go public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company. Tango’s CEO is Dr. Barbara Weber.

Cormorant has also had at least nine companies go public in 2021: Centessa Pharmaceuticals; Rain Therapeutics, Inc.; VectivBio Holding; Biomea Fusion; Prometheus Biosciences, Inc.; Design Therapeutics; Edgewise Therapeutics; Pharvaris, which Anne Lesage co-founded; and Talaris Therapeutics, Inc., which was founded by Dr. Suzanne Ildstad.

Integral Ad Science files to go public

Integral Ad Science, whose CEO is Liza Utzschneider and whose board includes Vista Equity PartnersBrooke Nakatsukasa, files to go public. The New York digital advertising measurement and verification platform has filed to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol IAS. The ownership stake of investors was not broken out. In addition to Vista, Integral has also received backing from Atlas Ventures and Sapphire Ventures.

Founded in 2009, Integral Ad produced $254 million in sales for the 12 months ended March 31. Liza has been CEO since January 2019. She previously was chief revenue officer and senior vice president at Yahoo. Liza’s background includes executive roles with Amazon and Microsoft.

Brooke has served on Integral’s board since December 2020. She joined Vista in 2016 and is a vice president on the private equity Flagship team. She currently works with the firm’s investments in Gainsight, Inc., iCIMS, Inc., Ping Identity Holding Corp. and Zapproved, LLC.

Another member of Vista’s team, Christina Lema, will join the board prior to the IPO. A managing director, Christina is Vista’s general counsel. In 2020, another Vista portfolio company on whose board Christina served, Datto Holding Corp., went public.

Integral’s board also includes Jill Putman, who is chief financial officer of Jamf Holding Corp, and Bridgette Heller, who is founder and CEO of the Shirley Proctor Puller Foundation.

A portfolio company of Meeker and Gotsch-led The Partnership Fund for New York City files to go public

CLEAR, the secure identify company founded and led by Caryn Seidman-Becker, files to go public. CLEAR is a portfolio company of BOND’s Mary Meeker and The Partnership Fund for New York City, whose president and CEO is Maria Gotsch. The New York-based company is seeking to raise $100 million and list on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol YOU.

CLEAR is perhaps best known for its check points at airports that allow members to get through security in a more-timely manner. Its network includes 38 airports, 26 sports and entertainment partners and 67 Health Pass-enabled partners.

For the 12 months ended March 31, CLEAR had $220 million in sales. Earlier this year, CLEAR raised $100 million in funding from a group that included BOND, The Partnership Fund for New York City and such other investors as Enlightened Hospitality Investments, 32 Equity, Liberty Media, LionTree Partners, Michael Jordan’s family office, Durable Capital Partners, General Atlantic and Revolution Growth. The company, according to Crunchbase, has raised $135 million in funding.

CLEAR’s board will include Kathryn Hollister, who previously served as the chief strategy officer of Deloitte’s global tax and legal practice.

Mary serves on the boards of Plaid, Square, Genies and Nextdoor, Inc., the social network for neighbors whose co-founders include Sarah Leary and Madison Bell. She has also supported BOND’s investments in Ironclad; Material Bank; On Running; BYJU’S; Checkr; Hipcamp, which was created by Alyssa Ravasio to enable people to find and book privately-owned campsites; and Canva, whose co-founder and CEO is Melanie Perkins. BOND closed its second fund earlier this year at $2 billion.

Private equity-backed Torrid files to go public

Torrid, a private equity-backed, plus-sized women’s fashion retailer whose CEO is Liz Muñoz, has filed to go public. The City of Industry, Calif. company is seeking to raise $100 million and list on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol CURV. Owned by Sycamore Partners, Torrid had net income of $25 million on $794 million in revenue of the year ended Jan. 20.

Liz has served as the company’s CEO since August 2018. She previously was the company’s senior vice president of product. Her background also includes serving as president of Lucky Brand. Torrid’s board also includes Lisa Harper, who is CEO of Belk, a department store chain. She previously served as CEO of Torrid and predecessor Hot Topic.

Tao-led SPK Acquisition goes public

Sophie Tao, who until earlier this year was with a Chinese private equity firm, is CEO and chairman of a special purpose acquisition company that has gone public. SPK Acquisition Corp. raised $50 million by offering 5 million units at $10 a unit. It is listed on Nasdaq under the symbol SPKAU. SPK will now look to merge with a private company and, in turn, bring that company public. It will specifically focus on an Asia-based TMT business.

Sophie was a partner with Hanfor Capital Management from 2016 until earlier this year. Her investments while there included SpaceX, 360 Finance, Inc., Ningmeng Pictures and Tricorn Technology Co.

A portfolio company of Seaya VenturesGonzález is poised to become publicly traded

A portfolio company of Seaya VenturesBeatriz González is poised to become publicly traded. Wallbox has agreed to combine with Kensington Capital Acquisition Corp. II – a special purpose acquisition company – and, in turn, be traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol WBX. The transaction values Wallbox at approximately $1.5 billion and will produce $330 million in proceeds for the Madrid-based smart charging and energy solutions provider. Wallbox has sold more than 100,000 units since its founding in 2015.

Wallbox has raised more than $70 million in funding from firms which, in addition to Seaya, included Cathay Innovation and Wind Ventures.

Beatriz is on Wallbox’s board. She is also on the boards of Glovo, Cabify, Spotahome, Bewe, Movo and buguroo.

Seaya, which Beatriz founded and is managing partner of, held a first close on its third fund last fall. The Madrid-based venture firm raised 85 million euros of its 125 million target. Seaya focuses on Southern Europe tech companies.

A SPAC chaired by Butte goes public

A special purpose acquisition company chaired by Amy Butte goes public. Iron Spark I, Inc. raised $150 million by offering 15 million shares at $10 a share. It is trading on Nasdaq under the symbol ISAAU. The SPAC will now seek to merge with a private company and, in turn, bring it public. Iron Spark will target the branded consumer sector.

Amy previously served as chief financial officer of the New York Stock Exchange, Man Financial and of the financial services division of Credit Suisse First Boston Inc. She currently serves on the boards of Bain Capital Specialty Finance, Tuscan Holdings, BNP Paribas USA and DigitalOcean, which went public earlier this year.

Iron Spark’s board also includes Ruma Bose, who is chief growth officer of Clearbanc and was previously president of Chobani Ventures.

Booth’s LifeStance Health goes public

LifeStance Health Group, which was co-founded by Gwen Booth and whose board includes TPG Capital’s Katherine Wood, goes public. The Scottsdale, Ariz. company raised $720 million by offering 40 million shares at $18 a share. It is listed on Nasdaq under the symbol LFST. LifeStance provides outpatient mental health services. It generated $447 million in revenue for the 12 months ended March 31.

Gwen serves as LifeStance’s chief operating officer. Her background also includes executive roles with Accelecare Wound Centers, Inc. and Covance.

TPG invested in LifeStance a year ago, joining existing investors Summit Partners and Silversmith Capital Partners. Katherine joined the board following the investment.

A principal at TPG, Katherine also is on the boards of Kadiant, Ellodi Pharmaceuticals, Neogene Therapeutics and Convey Health Solutions, which also recently filed to go public. Last fall, another of her portfolio companies, AskBio, was acquired by Bayer AG for what could be as much as $4 billion. Katherine in 2020 also saw another portfolio company, Adare Pharmaceuticals, Inc., acquired by Thomas H. Lee Partners and Frazier Healthcare Partners.

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