SynAffix raises Series A investment round to advance its GlycoConnect™ technology for creating next-generation ADCs

18 February 2014, Oss, the Netherlands – SynAffix B.V., a protein engineering company focusing on the creation of next-generation Antibody-Drug Conjugates (ADCs), today announced the completion of its Series A investment round. Financial details have not been disclosed.

Investors in the round are Aravis SA (Switzerland), BioGeneration Ventures (the Netherlands), MS Ventures, the corporate venture capital fund of Merck Serono and BOM Capital (the Netherlands). Edward van Wezel (BioGeneration Ventures), Simon Nebel (Aravis SA) and Hakan Goker (MS Ventures) will join the company’s Board of Directors.

SynAffix’ technology allows the development of next generation ADCs for targeted cancer and for other disease therapeutics. Its proprietary GlycoConnect™ technology enables the enzymatic introduction of a specific tag on the glycan moiety of a protein, followed by the conjugation of functional groups (e.g. a toxic payload). A key feature of GlycoConnect™ is that the conjugation technology does not require prior engineering of the protein. It preserves the integrity of the protein but at the same time retains the ease of traditional conjugation methodologies.

The general and versatile applicability of GlycoConnect™ to glycoproteins – including monoclonal antibodies – has the potential to be a powerful asset in the site-specific construction of stable and homogeneous ADCs, a promising novel class of targeted cancer therapeutics.

Peter van de Sande, CEO of SynAffix, comments: “We have attracted support and commitment from an impressive group of new investors, which will enable us to accelerate our plans to build a leading next generation ADC platform. We believe our technology has the potential to make a significant contribution to the future treatment of patients suffering from cancer and other serious illnesses.”

“The GlycoConnect™ technology presents a new and effective approach to the creation of ADCs,” says Edward van Wezel, Managing Partner of BioGeneration Ventures. “SynAffix has already established several collaborations with leading global pharmaceutical corporations which demonstrate the credibility and uniqueness of the approach. We are looking forward to working with the SynAffix team to achieve its strategic and scientific aims.”

For further information, please contact

SynAffix B.V.
Peter van de Sande, CEO
Tel: +31-88-022 4505

Instinctif Partners (on behalf of SynAffix)
Melanie Toyne Sewell / Robert Mayer / Cora Kaiser
Tel: +44 20 7457 2029 / +49 (0)89 3090 5189 13
SynAffix@instinctif.com

About SynAffix www.synaffix.com

Netherlands-based SynAffix is a protein engineering company that is focusing on advancing the field of antibody therapeutics through the application of knowledge and technology on next-generation site-specific Antibody-Drug Conjugates (ADCs). The application of the company’s proprietary glycan remodeling and metal-free click reagent bicyclononyne (BCN), utilized in its unique GlycoConnect™ technology, allows for the versatile and rapid construction of homogeneous and stable ADCs. SynAffix is committed to facilitate the development of first-in-class antibody therapies up to clinical proof-of-concept utilizing its expertise in bioconjugation strategies. The company was founded in 2010 as a spin-off of the Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

About Araviswww.aravis.ch

Aravis is the first independent Swiss on-shore private equity house, an established investor in the life science and renewable energy spaces. We are a “hands-on” investor taking leading positions and understanding the balance between finance, commercial assets and people. With this distinct and crafted approach, we are serving over 30 leading investors including corporate, pension funds, government funds, insurance companies and family offices. Currently actively managing more than a quarter of a billion Swiss francs, we have a cumulative history of investments in over 100 companies. These have resulted in several noticeable exits including the divestment of three renewable energy companies and a number of life science reverse take-overs, listings and trade sales. Our many years of experience in Swiss investment have enabled us to establish a platform with a comprehensive offering of investment, accounting, regulatory and reporting expertise.

About BioGeneration Ventures www.biogenerationventures.com

BioGeneration Ventures manages funds that are actively investing venture capital in the next generation of successful Life Sciences companies in The Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Its team has a successful track record and a broad experience in the Life Sciences sector. BioGeneration Ventures was co-founded by the Netherlands Genomics Initiative (NGI), the Holding of the University of Leiden, and ABN- AMRO.

About BOM Capitalwww.bom.nl

BOM Capital is part of the Development Agency for the Province of Brabant, the Netherlands. With its funds, BOM Capital invests in companies that develop unique innovations in top sectors such as life sciences, thereby making use of and strengthening the specific know-how and business in our region. Typically BOM Capital invests together with institutional venture capital funds.

About MS Ventureswww.msventures.com

MS Ventures is the strategic, corporate venture arm of the prescription medicines division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. We invest globally in emerging biotechnology companies that develop products and or technologies that have the potential to significantly improve patient outcomes in therapeutic areas relevant to our parent. Along with the € 100 million MS Ventures fund, our team also manages the €30 million Entrepreneur Partnership Program fund established to support the creation of spin-offs and the € 10 million Israel Bioincubator Fund, focused on pre-seed and seed opportunities coming out of Israel.