Startups, BioPharma

Private equity firm Cerberus infuses $105M into vaccine maker PaxVax

PaxVax will use the funding to pay off its debts, as well as launch a cholera vaccien called Vaxchora.

Bay Area specialty vaccine company PaxVax just received $105 million from Cerberus Capital Management, in exchange for offloading majority economic interest to the New York-based private equity firm.

PaxVax manufactures vaccines for infectious disease, selling the inoculations in the U.S. and Europe. Its primary product is a typhoid vaccine called Vivotif.

This immense funding infusion from Cerberus, which specializes in distressed investing, is to eliminate PaxVax’s debt – and to expand sales of Vivotif. It’ll also launch Vaxchora, a cholera vaccine under Phase 3 clinical development at PaxVax. PaxVax also has vaccines for anthrax, HIV and hepatitis A in clinical trials.

A notable addition to PaxVax’s board is James T. Lenehan, a senior advisor of Cerberus and former vice chairman and president of Johnson & Johnson.

Prior investors in PaxVax will retain a minority stake in the company, according to a release.