Hovione Capital and Portugal Ventures have completed a total investment of $1.6 million USD in CellmAbs, one of the largest seed investment rounds in Portugal in the healthcare sector, and the largest ever in the oncology field.
CellmAbs was founded in 2019 by Nuno Prego Ramos and Paula Videira, who have developed an innovative technology in the field of immuno-oncology, which is a new class of therapy and personalized medicine for treating solid tumors. This new therapy has already been shown to be effective in human and animal tissues and has achieved a huge reduction in tumors with no evidence of toxicity. "This technology is one of the most-important advances recently made in the field of oncology, as it is a new generation of medicines that can allow for more effective treatments. In this sense, this investment by Hovione Capital and Portugal Ventures is key to perform the first stages of preclinical development", says Nuno Prego Ramos, CellmAbs’ CEO.
"Hovione Capital was the first investor to identify the high potential of this potential new cancer treatment. CellmAbs is one more Portuguese company developing word-class, pioneering technology in its sector”, says Peter Villax, Chairman of Hovione Capital. "We are excited to invest in this company which has the potential to define the future of cancer treatment. CellmAbs is one of the first companies in the world in the field of Glico-Immuno-Oncology, a new area that is still largely unexplored, but with huge potential in the development of new cancer treatments. This startup has already caught the attention of several global Pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson and Merck Sharp & Dohme. This investment in innovative molecules is part of Hovione Capital's strategy, in addition to investing in medical devices and digital health”, says Ricardo Perdigão Henriques, CEO of Hovione Capital.
Rui Ferreira, Vice President of Portugal Ventures says: "We are proud to be the first investor in CellmAbs, in co-investment with Hovione Capital, a partner with whom we are aligned for future investments that stimulate the excellent scientific research of our universities with potential to be channeled into business projects. CellmAbs presents an innovative product in such a sensitive area as oncology, with excellent researchers presenting a remarkable and critical path to the success of this project that can revolutionize the current treatment paradigm. This investment in CellmAbs reinforces Portugal Ventures’ position in addressing the investment gap in Life Sciences projects”.