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Gimv and co-investors sell Breath Therapeutics to Zambon

25. July 2019

Antwerp (BE) / Munich — Gimv, Sofin­nova and Gilde Health­care sell their shares in the biophar­maceu­ti­cal company Breath Thera­peu­tics. The company, which specia­li­zes in the deve­lo­p­ment of first-in-class inha­la­tion solu­ti­ons for severe lung dise­a­ses, raised appro­xi­m­ately €43.5 million in 2017 in one of the largest Euro­pean Series A rounds to date. With the support of the inves­tors, two global Phase III studies on inha­la­tion therapy solu­ti­ons for the rare lung dise­ase Bron­chio­li­tis Obli­terans Syndrome (BOS) have now been initia­ted. There is curr­ently no appro­ved therapy for BOS and the dise­ase is fatal in many cases. The buyer of Breath Thera­peu­tics is the Italian family-owned phar­maceu­ti­cal and chemi­cal company Zambon.

Gimv joined Sofin­nova Part­ners (France) as lead inves­tor in Breath Thera­peu­tics in March 2017. Other inves­tors were Gilde Health­care (Nether­lands) and PARI Pharma as licen­sor for the inha­la­tion devices. In addi­tion to the finan­cial support, Gimv’s exper­tise was also crucial to the success of the spin-out process, to the syndi­ca­tion of the finan­cing struc­ture, to the imple­men­ta­tion of the stra­tegy, and to the imple­men­ta­tion of lean, inter­nal proces­ses. Thanks to this exter­nal know-how, Breath Thera­peu­tics has been able to further deve­lop its own inno­va­tion capa­bi­li­ties into a mature therapy solu­tion, as well as to build up a top-class team of experts in Europe and the USA.

Dr. Karl Nägler, Part­ner and respon­si­ble for the Health & Care plat­form at Gimv Germany, says: “We are even more plea­sed with the successful deve­lo­p­ment of the company over the past two years, as Gimv was signi­fi­cantly invol­ved in the stra­te­gic direc­tion and setting up of the plat­form for growth from the very begin­ning. The poten­tial of Breath Thera­peu­tics and the compound was clear to us at an early stage, as lung dise­a­ses are unfort­u­na­tely on the rise — espe­ci­ally due to envi­ron­men­tal factors and chan­ging life­styles. Against this back­ground, with Zambon’s support, Breath Thera­peu­tics is in an excel­lent posi­tion to successfully commer­cia­lize the product in the future and to deve­lop new fields of application.”

Dr. Jens Stege­mann, Chief Execu­tive Offi­cer at Breath Thera­peu­tics, adds: “With this compound, Breath Thera­peu­tics has deve­lo­ped a product that can signi­fi­cantly improve the lives of many people. We have found a part­ner that shares our vision in Zambon, an inno­va­tive company with high ethi­cal stan­dards and a clear focus on pati­ent well-being. Alre­ady, we have advan­ced the deve­lo­p­ment of a poten­tial first-in-class therapy for BOS, initia­ted two global Phase III trials, and are thus excel­lently posi­tio­ned in the market. Thanks to Zambon’s infra­struc­ture, exper­tise and clear focus on rese­arch and deve­lo­p­ment, we can acce­le­rate these proces­ses even further and make the treat­ment available to as many people as possi­ble as quickly as possi­ble. We would like to thank our former part­ners Gimv, Sofin­nova and Gilde Health­care for their support, which was crucial to the successful deve­lo­p­ment of our company, espe­ci­ally in the early years.”

This tran­sac­tion increa­ses Gimv’s NAV by EUR 20 million (as of March 31, 2019). With this invest­ment, Gimv achie­ved an ROI above its stated long-term target of 15%.

About Gimv
Gimv is a Euro­pean invest­ment company with almost 40 years of expe­ri­ence in private equity. The company is listed on Euron­ext Brussels, curr­ently mana­ges around EUR 1.1 billion and curr­ently invests in 55 port­fo­lio compa­nies, which toge­ther realize a turno­ver of more than EUR 2.75 billion and employ 14,000 people.

Gimv iden­ti­fies inno­va­tive, leading compa­nies with high growth poten­tial and supports them on their way to market leader­ship. Each of the four invest­ment plat­forms Connec­ted Consu­mer, Health & Care, Smart Indus­tries and Sustainable Cities is mana­ged by a dedi­ca­ted and compe­tent team, each based in Gimv’s home markets — Bene­lux, France and DACH — and supported by an exten­sive inter­na­tio­nal network of experts.

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