SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Oct 6, 2014) - Dolby Family Ventures, an early stage venture capital fund, today announced two exciting new investments in Alzheimer's research, adding PharmatrophiX and Cortexyme to the organization's growing portfolio of Healthcare Technology companies. Dolby Family Ventures is an evergreen fund that invests between $10-20 million per year, with nearly one-third of those investments targeted specifically to Life Sciences, with an emphasis on Brain Health.
Dolby Family Ventures invested $2 million in PharmatrophiX, leading a $5.5 million first closing round to fund their continued path to human clinical trials. PharmatrophiX is focused on the development of disease-modifying small molecule drugs targeting mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative and other disorders. Cortexyme, which is developing novel therapeutics and diagnostics for Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders, received a $500,000 investment from Dolby Family Ventures as part of $1 million in seed financing to fund their preclinical research.
"After losing my father, Ray Dolby, who battled Alzheimer's disease, my family has committed to pursuing a strategy that combines strategic investments made by Dolby Family Ventures, and philanthropic grants made by the Ray and Dagmar Dolby Family Fund, to help improve the lives of future Alzheimer's patients," said David Dolby, Managing Director, Dolby Family Ventures. "Dolby Family Ventures empowers emerging companies such as Cortexyme and PharmatrophiX that have the potential to accelerate a path to a cure."
The California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco recently announced the Dolby Family Fund's founding gift to establish the Ray Dolby Brain Health Center, which focuses on helping families with Alzheimer's, and by advancing the science of care through research and education. In 2013, the Dolby family led a capital raise for Cogstate Limited (CGS.AX), one of the leading providers of cognitive performance testing software and services for clinical trials and precision recruitment of patients.
"The Dolby family is covering a wide spectrum -- from the care Alzheimer's patients and their families receive, all the way down to the basics of how the disease works and how to create effective therapies," said Frank Longo, M.D., Ph.D., Chairman of the Board and Founder of PharmatrophiX. "Dolby Family Ventures has a lot of insight into novel approaches, and it has been incredibly valuable to have access to their vision and support."
"We're excited to work with Dolby Family Ventures. We appreciate their interest in pursuing multiple paths to finding a cure for Alzheimer's," said Casey Lynch, CEO of Cortexyme. "It's refreshing to work with investors that aren't influenced by the mob mentality of thinking. They took a careful look at our data and understood the logic behind our research."
Without venture capital firms that are willing to take financial risks like Dolby Family Ventures, early to mid-stage researchers -- which are too far along for academic funding, but not secure enough for larger pharmaceutical investments -- wouldn't be able to get the funding they need to navigate the rigorous FDA review process.
"Cortexyme and PharmatrophiX represent the types of novel, disruptive technologies whose development paths we want to advance," said Pascal Levensohn, Managing Director, Dolby Family Ventures. "Through syndications with strong investment partners who share our desire to support exceptional entrepreneurs, our focused approach targets companies that have the potential to be financially successful, and to have far reaching societal impact as they mature."
For more information about Dolby Family Ventures, visit: http://www.dolbyventures.com.
About Dolby Family Ventures
Dolby Family Ventures is an early stage venture firm focused on building great technology companies. We partner with best-in-class innovators and strong investment syndicate partners at the seed stage of a company's development. The fund honors the legacy of Ray Dolby and his commitment to engineers and their vision to solve the world's toughest problems. Dolby Family Ventures formalizes the Dolby family's ongoing, multi-generational commitment to discovering and supporting visionary entrepreneurs. We partner with our portfolio companies to implement best practices in operational finance, strategy and board development processes, ensuring the development of strong companies. Visit us here to learn more.