Sante Ventures expands third fund to $250 mln

Santé Ventures said it raised a $250 million third fund that is 79 percent larger than its second fund and aimed at maintaining ownership levels in its most successful portfolio companies.

The life sciences fund will target investments in 20 to 25 companies, was oversubscribed by 25 percent, and attracted more than 30 LPs. Among them was the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System, a new investor in the fund. Continuing investors accounted for about half of total capital.

The firm’s $140 million second fund invested in 14 companies.

The firm’s entry point is seed, Series A and sometimes Series B investments, and the larger fund gives the firm “more flexibility to maintain our ownership in the companies that are working,” said co-founder Kevin Lalande.

This means setting aside $25 million to $30 million for initial and follow-on investments, compared with the $15 million of the second fund.

The firm invests in medtech, biotech, digital health and healthcare services companies. Lalande said delivery of therapeutics has been an interest in biotech.

He also said higher early-stage valuations haven’t been a constraint. The new fund has invested in Cryosa, developing a treatment for sleep apnea, and Geneos Therapeutics, a neoantigen-based cancer therapy.

“We don’t have concern finding these opportunities,” he said.