HK-based Insilico Medicine raises capital, brings Series D funding to $95m

Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

Insilico Medicine, a clinical-stage artificial intelligence (AI)-driven drug discovery startup, has closed the second tranche of its Series D round led by new investor Prosperity7 Ventures, the diversified growth fund of oil giant Saudi Aramco’s Aramco Ventures.

This took Insilico’s Series D fundraising to $95 million, according to a statement on Wednesday.

The new funding came only two months after Insilico announced that it secured $60 million from a mix of investors including an unspecified asset management firm on the US West Coast and BHR Investment. Its existing investors – Warburg Pincus, B Capital, Qiming Venture Partners, BOLD Capital Partners, and Pavilion Capital – also participated in the earlier tranche along with Insilico founder and CEO Alex Zhavoronkov.

“The deepening application of AI and machine learning for drug discovery has demonstrated a transformative positive impact on the pharmaceutical industry,” said Aysar Tayeb, executive managing director of Prosperity7 Ventures, in the statement.

Insilico was launched in 2014 at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, before Zhavoronkov moved the headquarters to Hong Kong in April 2019.

The startup uses deep generative models, reinforcement learning, transformers, and machine learning techniques to discover novel targets and design novel molecular structures with desired properties. Its solutions cover the creation and discovery of innovative drugs for cancer, fibrosis, immunity, central nervous system diseases, and age-related diseases.

The fresh capital will support the continued advancement of Insilico’s pipeline, including its lead program currently in a Phase 1 study in New Zealand and in China, as well as several pipeline programmes in IND-enabling studies.

The proceeds will also fund the startup’s other key strategic initiatives, including further development of its end-to-end Pharma.AI platform, the launch of a fully-automated, AI-driven robotic drug discovery laboratory and biological data factory, and the establishment of regional centers.

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