Pasadena’s Alexandria Venture Investments Recognized as #1 Most Active Investor in Healthcare Startups

Published : Tuesday, January 8, 2019 | 5:51 AM

Alexandria Venture Investments, the strategic venture capital arm of Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. based in Pasadena, was recognized by Silicon Valley Bank as the most active biopharma investor by new deal volume in 2017-2018.

In the Bank’s Trends in Healthcare Investments and Exits 2019 report, the company was also ranked by Forbes as the #1 venture capital investor in the healthcare sector by U.S.-based deal volume in 2018, according to an analysis compiled by PitchBook for the publication.

The company’s venture activity is an integral component of Alexandria’s multifaceted business strategy and provides strategic insights and knowledge that strengthen its relationships across the life science industry. Venture activity also enables the company to recruit and retain the highest-quality tenant base, a company statement said.

Alexandria Venture Investments invests in new companies involved in novel, breakthrough discoveries in biopharma, diagnostics, research tools, agtech and technology. Alexandria’s executive chairman and founder Joel S. Marcus leads the highly sophisticated Alexandria Venture Investments team.

Marcus founded the company’s venture capital arm in 1996 with its first investment in Corixa Corporation, a Seattle-based biopharmaceutical company that was acquired by GlaxoSmithKline in 2005.

“Biomedical research is imperative to ensuring we advance the development of the most leading-edge treatments for patients who need them most,” Marcus said in the statement. “With more than 10,000 diseases known to humankind and only 500 with effective treatments, the work that our tenants and investment companies do –developing life-changing and lifesaving therapies – is the only effective way to contain the massive economic impact of disease in the face of an aging population that continues to grow dramatically. Our venture investment effort is vital to our mission to advance human health by curing disease and improving nutrition.”

Dr. Chris Otey, Senior Vice President of science and technology at Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. and Alexandria Venture Investments, said the company is proud to support transformative companies that help improve the quality of lives of people suffering from devastating diseases.

“We are incredibly motivated by the important discovery and development milestones of our portfolio companies as they move closer to being able to offer effective treatments and hopefully cures for patients whose options are limited or nonexistent,” Otey said.

Alexandria Venture Investments recently participated in the $400 million Series C financing of Relay Therapeutics, which creates pioneering medicines for patients by combining structural biology, biophysics and chemistry with the power of computers.

Alexandria first invested in Relay Therapeutics’ Series B financing.

Another notable investment in 2018 was Alexandria’s participation in Benson Hill Biosystems, Inc.’s $60 million Series C financing to focus on both human health and nutrition. Benson Hill is developing a revolutionary crop design platform to grow healthier and more sustainable food and ingredients.

To learn more about Alexandria Venture Investments and Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc., visit

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