NEW YORK, Feb. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe ("WCAS"), a leading private equity firm focused exclusively on the healthcare and technology industries, announced today that it is committing up to $250 million to a strategic partnership with Kiniciti, a newly-formed platform. Kiniciti will invest in non-therapeutic companies supporting cell and gene therapy ("CGT") innovation which have the potential to transform the cell and gene therapy ecosystem and deliver the promise of CGT to impact patients' lives.
Principal focus areas for investment include companies with: transformational capabilities in cell engineering and gene-editing; cell sources and other value-added starting materials; process science and scale-up tools and services; production technologies; and, source-to-patient delivery. Kiniciti plans to invest in a cross section of CGT opportunities, large and small, across multiple geographies.
Core to Kiniciti's strategy is its flexible investment model focused on ensuring that the ecosystem of companies supporting cell and gene therapeutics customers have access to the capital and strategic resources necessary to enable these advanced therapies to rapidly and reliably reach patients. This will include control, growth equity and significant minority stake structures intended to:
- Leverage decades of experience in growing and scaling companies across healthcare services and life sciences both organically and through M&A
- Speed commercial success through Kiniciti's sales, marketing and commercial excellence capabilities
- Benefit from the Kiniciti team's experience in expanding businesses and building strong teams across North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia
- Collaboratively structure creative deals and partnering arrangements within the ecosystem
- Capitalize on WCAS's and Kiniciti's ability to act quickly and draw on resources from the company's extensive network in the sector.
Kiniciti's leadership team includes Geoffrey Glass, Chief Executive Officer, and Jason Conner, Chief Strategy Officer. For more than 25 years, Mr. Glass has helped lead services and therapeutic companies in the life sciences sector. Mr. Conner has helped numerous high-growth life sciences and services companies in his senior strategy, corporate development, and legal roles over more than two decades. Kiniciti's core team has a total of five decades of experience in growing and scaling companies across the healthcare services, life sciences and tools and equipment sectors organically and through M&A.
Mr. Glass said, "The number of innovations, new companies and clinical trials in the cell and gene therapy space is at an all-time high – and, ironically, this is exactly when challenges emerge. The pace of funding and therapeutic innovation is far outstripping the available human capital to design, execute and scale the uniquely demanding processes required by advanced therapies. Furthermore, many promising cell and gene therapy solutions providers lack the scale and capital to support this pace of industry growth. We aim to address these challenges."
"In forming Kiniciti, we are thrilled to partner with WCAS, a pioneer in the private equity industry with a 40-year track record of building strong, sustainable platforms working hand-in-hand with management teams," added Mr. Glass. "The firm has deep experience investing in high growth healthcare businesses that are at unique inflection points. WCAS has raised and successfully managed funds totaling over $27 billion of committed capital, and dozens of public healthcare companies can trace their roots to WCAS. We are pleased that two of WCAS's General Partners, Nick O'Leary and Brian Regan, will serve on our Board of Directors and we look forward to benefitting from their judgment and years of experience."
Nick O'Leary, General Partner at WCAS, said, "Partnering with Kiniciti to help realize the promise of cell and gene therapy represents a natural extension for WCAS's Healthcare franchise. We will pursue opportunities where operational improvements, organic growth initiatives and strategic acquisitions can unlock full potential, for both our investments and the patients these companies serve. In today's cell and gene therapy landscape, we believe that there are many exciting therapy innovators that possess the right science but need the supporting ecosystem essential to advancing their therapeutics at the pace they require and deserve. We look forward to working with the Kiniciti team to help address these critical pain points to help deliver CGT at scale and lower cost."
Newly-formed Kiniciti was established to partner with companies with the potential to transform and strengthen the cell and gene therapy ecosystem. With a highly tailored, collaborative and flexible investment and strategic support model, Kiniciti aims to ensure the promise of cell and gene therapeutics is delivered quickly and safely to patients in need worldwide. The company's leadership team includes professionals experienced in investing in and building successful companies across the life sciences sector. For more information, visit kiniciti.com.
About Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe
WCAS is a leading U.S. private equity firm focused on two target industries: technology and healthcare. Since its founding in 1979, the firm's strategy has been to partner with outstanding management teams and build value for its investors through a combination of operational improvements, growth initiatives and strategic acquisitions. The firm has raised and managed funds totaling over $27 billion of committed capital. WCAS is currently investing an equity fund, Welsh, Carson, Anderson and Stowe XIII, L.P., which closed on $4.3 billion in commitments in 2019. For more information, please visit wcas.com.
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SOURCE Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe; Kiniciti