Minoryx and Sanifit receive investment from Caixa Capital Risk to fight against rare diseases.

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BY : Diego GutiérrezFebruary Wed, 2015
The biotechnology sector in general, and the rare disease sector in particular, has attracted the interest of Caixa Capital Risc, making it one of the most active investors in the sector. The latest related operations were Sanifit in November 2014, which received €3.6M from Caixa Capital Risc, and Minoryx in January 2015, which received €$1.6M.

Caixa Capital Risc invests €1.6m in Minoryx

La Caixa through the fund Caixa Innvierte Biomed II has led a €1.6M round of funding in Minoryx, in which the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology also took part (CDTI) y the Institut Català de Finances (ICF).

Minoryx is dedicated to the treatment of rare or minority diseases, prioritising metastatic diseases of genetic origin that mainly affect children and adolescents. The aim of the round is to start testing its first drug, a drug against adrenoleukodystrophy, a disease for which there is currently no cure. It affects one in 30,000 people in the world. In Europe, it is one of the congenital metabolic diseases that affects 3,700 children each year in Europe. In 90% of cases there is no treatment.

Minoryx had already received a round in 2013 from Inverready and Caixa Capital risk that allowed it to develop drugs up to preclinical studies for three serious rare diseases. Minoryx also received funding from public sources and investors from the Business Angels Network of Catalonia (BANC) in 2011.

Caixa capital risk invests €3.6m in Sanifit

"la Caixa", through Caixa Innvierte BioMed II, led in November 2014 a €3.6M financing round in Sanifit, spin off of the University of the Balearic Islands (UIB). The venture capital fund HealthEquity, the company Somtobir, the Nefrona Foundation and a group of private investors joined the operation. This transaction is the largest investment round carried out in 2014 in the field of biotechnology in Spain.

Sanifit Laboratoriesis a Spanish biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery and development of compounds against pathologies related to tissue and organ calcifications.

Sanifit is developing an experimental drug (SNF472) that offers two different indications: the treatment of cardiovascular diseases in haemodialysis patients and the treatment of calciphylaxis, a rare disease with a very high mortality rate (over 80%), which affects up to 4% of dialysis patients and drastically reduces the quality of life and life expectancy of its patients.

The capital increase Sanifit's experimental drug project SNF472 will be taken to the next stage of development.


Current events in the biotechnology sector in Spain

According to a EdTech sector study The biotechnology sector in Spain already has a specialised venture capital group that plays a very significant role. Caixa Capital Risc leads this ranking, with other investors such as Inveready and Ysios. Through its health funds Caixa Capital BioMed and Caixa Innvierte BioMed II, La Caixa has invested in more than 30 companies.

Also significant is the raising new funds from both Ysios and CRBinverbio. The Ousul Ventures fund, which is created by Catalan and American executives, has just announced the launch of a new fund specialising in biotechnology. It expects to raise between €100M and €150M, mainly from Middle Eastern sovereign wealth funds.

From the corporate point of view, the sector in Spain is heading towards the concentration. One of the challenges facing the Spanish biotechnology sector is to tackle its atomisation and reach a critical dimension for its growth, mainly international. 

Other posts that may interest you

New developments in biotech funds in Spain (En-2015)

Juan Diego Cuenca, partner of Abra-invest, analyses the biotechnology sector on Gestionaradio

M&A deals in biotech companies in Spain are on the rise

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