[THE INVESTOR] Korean firm Bio Leaders announced on Jan. 23 that it will set up a biotech incubating entity in Israel with venture capital firm Yozma Group.
“The official contract to establish the joint venture will be signed in March. We have been negotiating with Yozma since October,” a Bio Leaders official said in a statement.
The new JV seeks to develop new drug therapies for cancer based on the know-how of Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science. The Korean company also plans to use its own pipeline of drugs for synergies with the institute. The detailed plans will be finalized when both sides sign an agreement, as the stake share in the JV is still being negotiated.
The decision to cooperate came after Bio Leaders got 10 billion won (US$8.90 million) funding from the Israel-based VC by issuing convertible bonds. After the investment, Yozma will hold a 5.24 percent stake in the Korean company.
Founded in 1993, Yozma has invested in Israeli ventures, and more than 20 companies have been either listed on NASDAQ or were acquired by global companies. It established a unit in Korea in 2014 and launched its first fund here for investing in local biotech and medical startups.
By Song Seung-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)