The shift from fully integrated pharmaceutical companies (FIPCOs) to virtually integrated pharma companies (VIPCOs) has made biopharmas more reliant on external R&D. Often, that external R&D comes from startups nurtured through the venture funds of biopharma giants.
This year’s List offers three significant changes since last year’s ranking of corporate venture funds. One is the exclusion of Novo Ventures and Novo Seeds from the list, since the funds do not invest for the benefit for Novo Nordisk, but for its holding company Novo A/S. While Novo has significant stakes in Novo Nordisk and Novozymes, its venture investments are fully independent of the two major Novo Group companies, says Heather Ludvigsen, venture auditor with Novo Ventures. Other changes since 2014 include the presence of Baxalta Ventures, the fund launched following Baxter International’s spinout of its Baxter BioScience business into Baxalta, as well as the inclusion of Takeda Ventures.
GEN’s list of venture funds established by top pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies is based on revenue, ranked by total size. It is followed by another seven funds that are unranked because their fund size or other details are unavailable. Corporate venture funds are listed with their name, resources, current portfolio (mostly companies, though some funds invest in other funds), figure or range of investment per company (with ranges for initial investments where provided), investment preferences, and year established. Data for the list originated with the websites of the funds, with the findings emailed to corporate spokespeople for verification and, more often than not, updated with current figures on portfolio companies and investment ranges. In some cases, results vary with earlier-published figures or information. The list does not include funds formed jointly in recent years by corporate venture funds and venture capital firms, mostly to develop early-stage companies and their therapeutics. Those are the subject of a separate GEN List last published in July 2014.