Updated on 8 June 2012
Taiwan is also a strategically important region to us offering tremendous opportunities. By investing there, we can broaden access to emerging markets in China and East Asia. We also offer companies in Taiwan a window on innovation in the West and can help them grow their companies into players on the global stage. The Taiwan government has thrown its full support behind its growing biomedical industry.
One of our investments in this region has been in Taiwan Liposome Company (TLC), with operations in Taipei, Leiden and South San Francisco. TLC is developing and commercializing a portfolio of "super-generics" and NCEs with advantageous delivery or formulation characteristics. Burrill led the Series A financing of $16 million and later the mezzanine financing of $10 million in the company. The company became a Taiwan public listed company in October 2011. The company has reached significant partnership agreement with global generic players and its stock has doubled since the public listing. We also made an investment in Waterstone Pharmaceuticals, a fully integrated pharmaceutical company with a focus on bone/inflammation, metabolic diseases and anti-infective based in Hubei, China. Burrill led the Series A financing of $10 million in the company.
With respect to India, we led the investment in BioImagene. Within 18 months of the investment, the company reached key value inflexion points and was acquired by Roche in 2010. We are also very active on the conference front and host a Pan Asia conference in conjunction with Queensland.
Could you shed some light on the activities of the Burrill Merchant Banking Group in the APAC region?
Dr Fernandez: The Burrill Merchant Banking Group (MBG) has led several transactions in Asia Pacific. While we cannot disclose the names of all clients for confidentiality reasons, some of the deals that can be mentioned are the $300 million Samsung-Biogen Idec joint venture for the development, manufacture and marketing of biosimilars where Burrill MBG acted as an advisor to Samsung. It is also engaged by PharmaEssentia, a company based in Taiwan, to find US and Japan partners for the company's phase III product for Polycythemia Vera; by Furiex to find a global partner for a phase III antibiotic development with major focus regions being China and South Korea; a client in Japan that is being strategically advised and taken on non-deal road shows. They have also been engaged to find a global partner for a phase III rotavirus vaccine development program with a special focus in the China region.