MEDFORD, Mass., Sept. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Silk Therapeutics, Inc., a specialty biomaterials company, announced today the closing of an $11 million Series A3 financing. This round was led by Jeff Vinik, the former manager of Fidelity's Magellan Fund and owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning, and legacy investor, the Kraft Group, along with support from additional existing investors Roy P. Disney, Lear Corporation, and Altman Health Investments. This concludes a total of $21 million within Series A funding based on significant progress made by Silk Therapeutics in both the skincare and fabric spaces.
"Closing our Series A is a massive milestone that validates our ongoing efforts to leverage natural liquid silk to replace unregulated chemicals in common consumer products," said Greg Altman, Chief Executive Officer, Silk Therapeutics. "We are elated to have Jeff Vinik join our core team of investors and our Board of Directors. Jeff brings tremendous experience, strategic insight and a willingness to guide us on expansion opportunities."
Silk Therapeutics is primarily known for its clean and EWG VERIFIED™ skincare collections that feature pure, liquid silk as an active ingredient. After receiving five patent approvals in 2016, the company worked to build-out its new natural chemistry platform, which propelled the development of liquid silk at mass scale. After vigorous testing, Silk Therapeutics discovered use cases in fabric whereby liquid silk infused into the surface layer offers multiple benefits for the multi-billion dollar performance apparel industry. This new finding quickly attracted the attention of both new investors and clothing industry partners due to the company's sustainable production processes, and increasing concern about unregulated, and often undisclosed chemicals in mass market apparel.
"Based on its intellectual property portfolio and vision for growth, there are endless opportunities across industry verticals for Silk Therapeutics," said Jeff Vinik. "I truly enjoy collaborating with emerging private companies, especially in this case where the leadership team is visionary, committed to changing markets to improve health, and with a proven track record. Apparel is an exciting market for the immediate future, one where I feel we may own a true, competitive advantage."
Educating the marketplace about the challenges and risks of today's fabric chemistry is a priority for Silk Therapeutics. Apparel companies will now have a way to achieve the ultimate in comfort and performance without the addition of plastics, heavy metals and carcinogenic agents used to treat conventional fabrics. With new, diverse investors, shifting the apparel marketplace towards the more biocompatible and sustainable chemistry offered by liquid silk is the ultimate, long-term end goal.
Rebecca Lacouture, Chief Operating Officer, Silk Therapeutics, added, "Liquid silk is a platform ingredient. It replaces emulsifiers, preservatives, and anti-bacterials — agents otherwise commonly used in both skincare and apparel -— and offers companies safer, more effective options to enhance the performance of everyday products in constant contact with the skin."
About Jeff Vinik
Jeff Vinik is the former manager of the Fidelity Magellan Fund and is currently the principal owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL) and co-owner with Cascade Investment of Strategic Property Partners, a real estate company developing a $3 billion mixed use project in Tampa Bay.
About The Kraft Group
The Kraft Group is a privately owned, family-operated company with a strong commitment to customer focus. The company's diverse interests are concentrated in five areas: paper/packaging manufacturing and forest products distribution; sports and entertainment; real estate development; private equity investing; and philanthropy.
About Lear Corporation
Lear Corporation was founded in Detroit in 1917 as American Metal Products. This year marks the company's 100th anniversary. Lear is one of the world's leading suppliers of automotive seating systems and electrical distribution systems (E-Systems). Lear serves every major automaker in the world, and Lear content can be found on more than 400 vehicle nameplates. The company's world-class products are designed, engineered and manufactured by a diverse team of approximately 156,000 employees located in 38 countries. Lear currently ranks #151 on the Fortune 500 and is headquartered in Southfield, Michigan. Further information about Lear is available at lear.com or on Twitter via @LearCorporation.
About Altman Health Investments
Altman Health Investments (AHI) is a seed fund focused on investments for the improvement of human health. AHI was founded by Greg Altman, PhD, and Rebecca Horan, PhD, long time business partners and co-founders of Silk Therapeutics, Inc.
About Silk Therapeutics
Headquartered in Medford, MA, Silk Therapeutics, Inc. is the leader in silk protein solutions for human health and wellness. The founders are world-renowned experts in silk science and in the application of silk-based biomaterials in the use of unmet medical needs. Dr. Greg Altman, Chief Executive Officer, and Dr. Rebecca (Horan) Lacouture, Chief Operating Officer, have studied silk protein science for more than 17 years. Their scientific accomplishments resulted in the commercialization of the first FDA-cleared silk-based medical device for soft tissue repair in 2008. They are currently focused on redefining healthcare through how we treat skin, with a focus on reducing chemical exposures through everyday consumer products. Dr. Lacouture's personal experience as a cancer survivor, and the company's commitment to the wellbeing of its customers, is the foundation for Silk Therapeutics' innovative, clean, mission-driven skincare. For more information about our skincare and charitable mission, please visit www.silktherapeutics.com.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP acts as general corporate and intellectual property counsel to Silk Therapeutics.
Christina Teves, Silk Therapeutics
SOURCE Silk Therapeutics