Melbourne VC pulls in $270m for BioTech push

Brandon How

Melbourne venture capital firm Brandon Capital on Tuesday announced the first close of its sixth fund, which raised $270 million for local and global BioTechs.

It takes the 2007 founded firm’s total raises past $1 billion and will expand its more than 60 investments in therapeutic, medical device, and HealthTech companies.

The close was announced during the 2024 BIO International Convention in San Diego, where Industry minister Ed Husic and Ambassador to the United States Kevin Rudd are spruiking Australia’s medical science alongside the local sector.

Brandon Capital Founding Partners Dr Stephen Thompson and Dr Chris Nave. Image: Supplied

“Australia ranks among the top 10 countries globally for the quality and output of its medical and clinical research,” Brandon Capital managing partner Dr Chris Nave said.

“… The global biotech sector, valued at approximately US$1.55 trillion, continues to grow unabated, spurred on by events like COVID and the emergence of new therapies. We plan to provide our investors with exposure to this growth.”

The potential funding injection in BioTechs follows a signal from the Albanese government that it will pour up to $1.5 billion from its National Reconstruction Fund into precision manufacturing of medical devices, digital health solutions and innovative therapeutics.

But the federal government’s investment push is predicated on private markets doing the heavy lifting in capital intensive areas like RNA science.

Mr Husic said the government will release a response to consultation on Australia’s RNA sector that launched almost a year ago within the coming weeks.

Brandon Capital subsidiary, Brandon BioCatalyst is also responsible for overseeing the delivery of the CUREator BioMedTech startup incubator, initially founded in 2021.

The latest round of the $50 million CUREator+, delivered in conjunction with digital health accelerator ANDHealth, targets Australian biomedical and digital health solutions for dementia and cognitive decline.

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