smartbax closes seed financing of 1.2 million euros

Photo: smart­bax Team f.l. Dr. Elisa­beth Karg, Prof. Dr. Stephan Sieber, Dr. Sylvia Varland, Dr. Robert Macsics, Dr. Eric Juske­witz, Simona Schind­ler and Marco Jane­zic ©smart­bax
24. May 2023

Munich, Germany — smart­bax, a biotech company deve­lo­ping next-gene­ra­­tion anti­bio­tics, announ­ced the closing of a €1.2 million seed finan­cing round with Boeh­rin­ger Ingel­heim Venture Fund (BIVF) and High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF). Thus, smart­bax has so far raised a total of 1.9 million euros for the deve­lo­p­ment of inno­va­tive anti­bio­tics against multi-resistant bacteria.

With the new capi­tal, the company will advance its precli­ni­cal small mole­cule anti­bio­tic disco­very studies and expand its scien­ti­fic team to further deve­lop its inno­va­tive rese­arch plat­forms and find new solu­ti­ons against multi-drug resistant patho­gens. Unlike clas­si­cal anti-bacte­rial agents, smartbax’s product candi­da­tes act via a unique, dual-targe­­ting mecha­nism. This not only inhi­bits essen­tial proces­ses in the energy meta­bo­lism of the multi-resistant bacte­ria, but also crea­tes a stimu­la­tion of the protein secre­tion of the bacte­ria, which leads to the self-diges­­tion of the cells.

“The growing number of multi­d­rug-resistant infec­tions, which alre­ady account for 1.3 million deaths world­wide each year, high­lights the urgent need for new approa­ches to treat resistant infec­tions. We are convin­ced that with our diffe­ren­tia­ted approach we can over­come the limi­ta­ti­ons of curr­ently available anti­bio­tics and thus deve­lop effec­tive thera­peu­tics against both Gram-posi­­tive and Gram-nega­­tive bacte­ria,” said Dr. Robert Macsics, CEO and co-foun­­der of smart­bax.

smart­bax was foun­ded in 2021 by Dr. Robert Macsics, Marco Jane­zic and Prof. Dr. Stephan Sieber and supported by initial start-up funding of 700,000 euros from the BIVF. The company’s scien­ti­fic foun­da­ti­ons are based on outstan­ding rese­arch results from Prof. Dr. Sieber’s working group at the Tech­ni­cal Univer­sity of Munich (TUM). These have alre­ady recei­ved the VIP+ Vali­da­tion Award from the German Fede­ral Minis­try of Educa­tion and Rese­arch and the m4 Award from the Bava­rian State Minis­try of Econo­mic Affairs, Regio­nal Deve­lo­p­ment and Energy.

“The inno­va­tive mecha­nisms of action explo­red by smart­bax may open new avenues in the fight against serious bacte­rial infec­tions. The approach also appears promi­sing to over­come exis­ting resis­tance mecha­nisms and makes rapid spread of new resis­tance unli­kely. I am plea­sed that we can accom­pany the scien­ti­fi­cally strong team of smart­bax on their way to meet a highly rele­vant socie­tal chall­enge”, explains Dr. Ange­lika Vlachou, Part­ner at HTGF.

“The deve­lo­p­ment of novel anti­bio­tics repres­ents a valuable contri­bu­tion to the fight against multi­d­rug-resistant bacte­rial infec­tions. The foun­ding team of smart­bax is pursuing a highly inno­va­tive approach, which offers the poten­tial for broad appli­ca­bi­lity in nume­rous dise­a­ses. We are plea­sed to accom­pany smart­bax in its further rese­arch acti­vi­ties and ther­eby support the deve­lo­p­ment of new and urgen­tly needed thera­peu­tic approa­ches in the field of bacte­rial infec­tious dise­a­ses,” says Dr. Sebas­tian Kreuz, Invest­ment Mana­ger of the BIVF.

About smart­bax

smart­bax is deve­lo­ping a new gene­ra­tion of anti­bac­te­rial agents to combat the incre­asing spread of multi-resistant bacte­ria. The team of experts is rely­ing on inno­va­tive solu­ti­ons that attack bacte­ria at diffe­rent sites simul­ta­neously, thus making it more diffi­cult for resis­tance to form. In addi­tion, the company specia­li­zes in the targe­ted acti­va­tion of enzy­ma­tic proces­ses in bacte­ria, which is a parti­cu­larly promi­sing approach in the context of biofilms that are diffi­cult to treat. Knowing that tomorrow’s resis­tance crisis can only be aver­ted by acting today, smart­bax 2021 was foun­ded in Munich with the goal of making inno­va­tive rese­arch appli­ca­ble to create novel anti­bio­tics that add real value to pati­ents worldwide.
Website link:

About the Boeh­rin­ger Ingel­heim Venture Fund

Since its incep­tion in 2010, Boeh­rin­ger Ingel­heim Venture Fund GmbH (BIVF) has been inves­t­ing in breakth­rough biotech­no­logy compa­nies in the thera­peu­tics field to foster inno­va­tion in biome­di­cal rese­arch. The BIVF seeks signi­fi­cant impro­ve­ments in pati­ent care through scien­ti­fic pionee­ring and its clini­cal appli­ca­tion by buil­ding long-term rela­ti­onships with scien­tists and entre­pre­neurs. The BIVF focu­ses on novel thera­peu­tic concepts charac­te­ri­zed by high unmet medi­cal need in the fields of immuno-onco­­logy, rege­ne­ra­tive medi­cine, multi-resistant bacte­rial infec­tions and digi­tal health. This includes new plat­form tech­no­lo­gies that address previously unad­dressa­ble targets and new biolo­gi­cal entities.

The BIVF takes an active role within its port­fo­lio compa­nies — deli­ve­ring signi­fi­cant added value through its own scien­ti­fic and busi­ness exper­tise in drug deve­lo­p­ment. The BIVF has a volume of EUR 300 million, is repre­sen­ted by offices in Europe (Germany), the USA (Boston and San Fran­cisco) and China (Beijing and Hong Kong) and curr­ently over­looks a port­fo­lio of 40 companies.

About High-Tech Gründerfonds

The seed inves­tor High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) finan­ces tech­no­logy start-ups with growth poten­tial and has supported more than 700 start-ups since 2005. With the launch of the fourth fund, HTGF has around 1.4 billion euros under manage­ment. The team of expe­ri­en­ced invest­ment mana­gers and start-up experts supports the young compa­nies with know-how, entre­pre­neu­rial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the fields of digi­tal tech, indus­trial tech, life scien­ces, chemis­try and rela­ted busi­ness areas. More than €4.5 billion in capi­tal has been inves­ted in the HTGF port­fo­lio by exter­nal inves­tors in more than 2,000 follow-on finan­cing rounds to date. In addi­tion, the fund has alre­ady successfully sold shares in more than 170 companies.

The fund inves­tors in the public-private part­ner­ship include the German Fede­ral Minis­try for Econo­mic Affairs and Climate Protec­tion, KfW Capi­tal, the Fraun­ho­­fer-Gesel­l­­schaft and over 40 compa­nies from a wide range of industries.

Advi­sors to Boeh­rin­ger Ingel­heim Venture Fund (BIVF) and High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF): Green­Gate Part­ners provi­ded compre­hen­sive support to the two funds in struc­tu­ring and imple­men­ting the finan­cing round as well as in draf­ting and nego­tia­ting the rele­vant contrac­tual documents.


Subscribe newsletter

Here you can read about the latest transactions, IPOs, private equity deals and venture capital investments, who has raised a new fund, how Buy & Build activities are going.

Get in touch

Contact us!
fyb [at]