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News : Irish Last Updated: Apr 24, 2009 - 5:31:05 PM


First Life Sciences Fund established under the Enterprise Ireland Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2007-2012; €75 million raised
By Finfacts Team
Apr 30, 2008 - 4:09:04 AM

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The First Life Sciences Fund established under the Enterprise Ireland Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2007-2012 has been promoted by former Elan executives who have raised €75 million in venture capital to invest in life sciences projects over the next five years.

Dr Manus Rogan, Aidan King and Dr Ena Prosser have launched Fountain Healthcare Partners, a Dublin-based group that plans to invest in the speciality pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices and diagnostics sectors.

Enterprise Ireland has contributed €21.75 million, while the National Pension Reserve Fund has invested €15 million.

The Fund will invest from €0.5m to €7m per company and will have an emphasis on the specialty pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices and diagnostics sectors.

Over 90% of the capital invested in the fund was sourced from institutional investors of which 75% are Irish based. Institutional investors include the European Investment Fund and the National Pension Reserve Fund. A select number of high net worth individual investors
also participated.

Commenting on the announcement Dr Manus Rogan, a founding partner at Fountain said: “We have been very pleased with the level and quality of investor participation in the first close. There was clear support for our investment strategy, and we significantly exceeded our original first close target. Fountain is now targeting €100 million in commitments at its final close”.

Commenting at the launch Frank Ryan CEO, Enterprise Ireland said: “The €75m Fountain Healthcare Partners Fund I is led by a highly skilled team with significant industry experience. The Fund will be a vital contributor to the development of a dynamic and commercially viable venture capital sector in Ireland. Furthermore, it complements Enterprise Ireland’s role in supporting the sustained growth and development of the indigenous life sciences sector: building on the already strong platform and linkages provided by the multinational base in Ireland”.

“The life science sector in Ireland has clearly lacked a dedicated fund of scale and expertise to accelerate the commercialisation of innovative products emerging from our indigenous companies. Our aim is to help fill that gap.” commented Aidan King, Fountain’s New York based partner.

Fountain Healthcare Partners Fund I, one of the largest emerging manager VC funds in the life science sector globally in the past 2 years, will nvest this capital over multiple funding rounds alongside international and domestic life science focused VC firms.

Fountain’s investment premise holds that the global life science sector dynamics are currently very favorable for smaller venture backed private companies. Fountain also maintains that the Irish life science industry is at a turning point and has been underserved from a VC perspective.

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