Flagship Pioneering, the Boston-based biotech company incubator and holding company, said it has raised $1.1 billion for its Flagship Labs unit.
Flagship, which raised $1 billion back in 2019 for growth stage investment vehicles, develops and operates startups that leverage biotechnology innovation to provide goods and services that improve human health and promote sustainable industries.
“We’re honored to have the strong support of our existing Limited Partners, as well as the interest from a select group of new Limited Partners, to support Flagship’s unique form of company origination during this time of unprecedented economic uncertainty,” said Noubar Afeyan, the founder and chief executive of Flagship Pioneering, in a statement.
In addition to its previous focus on health and sustainability, Flagship will use the new funds to focus on new medicines, artificial intelligence and “health security”, which the company says is “designed to create a range of products and therapies to improve societal health defenses by treating pre-disease states before they escalate,” according to Afeyan.
Flagship companies are already on the forefront of the healthcare industry’s efforts to stop the COVID-19 pandemic. Portfolio company Moderna is one of the companies leading efforts to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus which causes COVID-19.
In the 20 years since its launch, Flagship has 15 wholly owned companies and another 26 growth stage companies among its portfolio of investments.
New companies include: Senda Biosciences, Generate Biomedicines, Tessera Therapeutics, Cellarity, Cygnal Therapeutics, Ring Therapeutics, and Integral Health. Growth Companies developed or backed by Flagship include Ohana Biosciences, Kintai Therapeutics, and Repertoire Immune Medicines.
Two of the companies in the Flagship Labs portfolio have already had initial public offerings in the past two years, the company said. Kaleido Biosciences and Axcella Health raised public capital in 2019 and Moderna Therapeutics conducted a $575 million secondary offering earlier this year.