BioPharma, Startups

MPM Capital raises $400M in seventh venture fund

The company plans to invest the money across several therapeutic areas and modalities, including oncology, immunology, gene and cell therapies.

A life sciences-focused venture capital firm based near Boston has raised more than one-third of a billion dollars to invest in early-stage companies.

Cambridge, Massachusetts-based MPM Capital said Thursday that it had raised $400 million for its seventh venture fund, BioVentures 2018, or BV2018. The amount raised is consistent with what the company set out to raise in its Form D filed in February 2018 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“Over two decades of investing, MPM has developed long-standing and strategic partners with academia, biotech and large pharma,” MPM co-founder Luke Evnin said in a statement. “Vital to our objective of delivering new treatments to improve the lives of patients, these relationships support our ongoing discovery of next-generation translational science and provide financing and acquisition opportunities across our portfolio.”

The firm said it is currently investing the money from BV2018 and its two oncology-focused funds, which together have more than $1 billion in capital. BV2018 in particular will be invested across multiple therapeutic areas, including oncology, immunology and neuroscience, along with cell, gene and nucleic acid therapies.

In November, MPM participated as an existing investor in a $70 million Series C funding round for South San Francisco, California-based Harpoon Therapeutics, which had been led by New York-based OrbiMed. The company is developing T-cell engager therapies, and its lead product candidate, HPN424, is in a Phase I study for prostate cancer. Last month, the company filed with the SEC for an $86.25 million initial public offering. And earlier this month, it announced that it expected to raise $75.6 million.

Another MPM portfolio company, TCR2 Therapeutics, also made its IPO earlier this month, announcing on Feb. 13 that it had been priced at $75 million. TCR2 made news last month when, along with Gossamer Bio, it reportedly sought to use a legal maneuver permitted by the SEC to go public automatically during the government shutdown, when the agency was unable to sign off on IPOs.

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