Poxel SA, a Lyon, France-based biopharma startup developing drugs with a primary focus on Type 2 diabetes, has closed a €13m (approximately $17m) Series B funding.
The round was led by Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners, with participation from existing investors InnoBio and Omnes Capital.
The company intends to use the capital to to confirm efficacy data of its lead program, Imeglimin, a novel anti-diabetic agent. Imeglimin is a new Tetrahydrotriazine-containing class of oral anti-diabetics, the Glimins. It is being developed through phase II trials as a monotherapy and as an add-on therapy to the main anti-diabetic agents, starting with metformin and sitagliptin. Poxel now plans to strengthen its efficacy profile as a monotherapy treatment in a large six-month trial involving 400 diabetic patients.
Founded in 2009 as spin off from Merck Serono, and led by Thomas Kuhn, CEO, the company develops drug candidates to clinical proof-of-concept before seeking pharmaceutical industry partners operating independently as a lean organization with in-house drug development expertise.
Poxel raised €16m in a Series A round in 2010 (read here).
Poxel’s product pipeline consists of several first-in-class Type 2 diabetes products, including Imeglimin in Phase II development. Recently, Imeglimin has also shown significant clinical benefits in Type 2 diabetes, when added to sitagliptin. The Phase II study achieved the primary and secondary endpoints. Previously, Imeglimin has shown incremental efficacy as an add-on therapy to metformin, in patients inadequately controlled by monotherapy. In addition, a direct activator of AMPK is in preclinical development for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes.
Imeglimin is the first in a new chemical class of oral anti-diabetic agents, the Glimins. Imeglimin acts on three main target organs involved in glucose homeostasis: the liver, the muscle, and the pancreas with therefore a distinct mode of action compared to existing treatments for Type 2 diabetes. Thanks also to its great safety and tolerability profile, it appears as an excellent partner to complement other treatments. Imeglimin phase 2a monotherapy results were published in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism in April 2012. In October last year, Poxel reported phase 2 results of Imeglimin as add-on therapy to metformin in patients inadequately controlled with metformin monotherapy. This study achieved its primary end-point of superiority in HbA1c reduction versus placebo (p
About Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners
Paris-based Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners is dedicated to minority investments into privately-owned companies. It has currently close to €1 billion under management which is being invested primarily as life sciences venture capital and growth capital.
Its Life Sciences Team of eight professionals brings together over 55 years of experience in the Life Science industry and more than 100 years of private equity and venture capital experience. The team has €355 million under management through its Biodiscovery franchise.
Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners is an independently managed affiliate of La Compagnie Financière Edmond de Rothschild Banque. For more information please visit: www.edrip.fr.
About CDC Entreprises / InnoBio
CDC Entreprises, an AMF-accredited fund management company and wholly-owned subsidiary of the Caisse des Dépôts, invests directly and indirectly in companies, from technological seed capital to small-scale mergers and acquisitions, at both the national and regional levels. It manages investments for France’s FSI (Fonds Stratégique d’Investissement), for the Caisse des Dépôts (now its second largest investor) and for other public and private institutions in the small and medium size business sector. Its objective is to promote the emergence of firms with long-term, stable growth by strengthening their equity capital and supporting their development.
As such, CDC Entreprises manages on behalf of the State, under the Programme d’Investissements d’Avenir, the Fonds National d’Amorçage, the SME component of the Fonds national pour la Société Numérique, FSN SME and the Ecotechnologies Fund.
CDC Entreprises is a major player in the equity financing of biotechnology companies in France. It participates under the Programme FSI France Investissement, in funding of most French sectorial funds dedicated to life sciences. It is also the management company of InnoBio, a venture capital fund (FCPR) of 139 million euros, subscribed by the FSI (37 percent) and major pharmaceutical companies worldwide (Sanofi Aventis, GSK, Roche, Novartis, Pfizer, Lilly, Ipsen, Takeda, Boehringer-Ingelheim). InnoBio operates on the national territory. The main objective of the fund is to invest directly in equity and quasi-equity investments in companies providing products and services and innovative technology in the field of health. InnoBio is composed of a team of industry expert investors, led by Laurent Arthaud.
About Omnes Capital
Omnes Capital is a major player in private equity, with a commitment to financing SMEs. With €1.9 billion in assets under management, Omnes Capital provides companies with the capital needed to finance their growth and with key expertise in a number of areas: LBO & Expansion Capital, Venture Capital in technology and life sciences, Renewable Energy, Secondary Funds of Funds, Co-Investment.Omnes Capital, formerly Crédit Agricole Private Equity, was a subsidiary of Crédit Agricole until March2012 when the company gained its independence. Omnes Capital is a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).