ARCH Venture Partners’ Kristina Burow

From our Women's PE Briefs - week commencing August 2, 2021

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A biotech company that ARCH Venture PartnersKristina Burow helped launch is set to be acquired for as much as $2 billion. Vividion Therapeutics, Inc., which filed in June to go public, has agreed to be purchased by Bayer AG for $1.5 billion up front and another $500 million in milestones. Bayer said the purchase will strengthen its drug discovery platform and that Vividion will continue to operate autonomously and at an arm’s length basis. According to Vividion’s filing with the SEC, ARCH was the largest shareholder with a 16 percent pre-IPO stake. Versant Ventures owned 13.5 percent and Cardinal Partners was listed as owning 12.3 percent. Vividion raised a total of $371.5 million, according to Crunchbase. Earlier this year, it closed a $135 million Series C round that was co-led by Logos Capital and Boxer Group of Tavistock and included ARCH and Versant among others.

Based in San Diego, Vividion is utilizing a novel drug discovery platform that applies chemical proteomics to expand the druggable proteome and address difficult targets to bring new, transformative treatments to patients with serious illnesses. It was created in 2014, utilizing technology developed in labs at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif. Vividion is currently developing therapies against cancer and immune disorders, but its platform can be applied to any disease area. Vividion had been working on programs in collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb and Roche and booked $43 million in revenue for the 12 months ended March 31.

ARCH and Versant Ventures co-led Vividion’s $50 million Series A round in February 2017, which also included Cardinal Partners. In making that investment, Kristina, in a statement said that the Vividion team “has created a novel platform based on chemical proteomics and modern synthetic chemistry that will radically expand the druggability of the human proteome.” This, in turn, she said should “lead to innovative therapeutics that have the ability to significantly benefit patients.”

Kristina joined the board at that time. Vividion’s board also includes Christine Siu, who is the chief operating officer in-residence at BridgeBio Pharma, Inc. and Catherine Friedman, who is an independent financial consultant in the life sciences industry.

Another company that Kristina led ARCH into, Erasca, recently went public. Also based in San Diego, Erasca is dedicated to advancing new scientific approaches to erase cancer. Kristina is not on Erasca’s board. She is on the boards of Boundless Bio, Autobahn Therapeutics, ROME Therapeutics, Boragen, AgBiome and five companies that are publicly traded: Beam Therapeutics, Gossamer Bio, Metacrine, Scholar Rock and Unity Biotechnology.

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