If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s that Verily, Alphabet Inc.’s life sciences division, won’t stay quiet for long. Only a few days into 2019 and Verily, formerly Google’s life sciences arm, is already announcing a $1 billion investment round.
The South San Francisco, CA-based company said the hefty round was led by Silver Lake, and proceeds would be used to support growth in key strategic areas, including investments in strategic partnerships, global business development opportunities, and potential acquisitions.
Other new investors in the round include Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and other global investment management firms.
“We are taking external funding to increase flexibility and optionality as we expand on our core strategic focus areas,” Andrew Conrad, CEO of Verily, said in a release. “Adding a well-rounded group of seasoned investors, led by Silver Lake, will further prepare us to execute as healthcare continues the shift towards evidence generation and value-based reimbursement models.”
Verily has been anything but quiet in the healthcare sector. The company has a list of collaborators that read like a who’s who of the medtech and pharma for that matter. In early 2018, MD+DI published a list of seven key partnerships that helped Verily establish itself in the healthcare space.
Beginning in 2014, the company kicked off a series of collaborations stretching from diabetes monitoring to developing surgical robotics. In 2018, the firm partnered with Sensile and Sanofi to commercialize an “all-in-one” pre-filled insulin patch pump. Verily also formed a joint venture with sleep-health specialist ResMed to tackle sleep apnea.
However, not all of Verily’s collaborations have gone off without a hitch. In November of 2018, the company announced that it and Novartis would halt work on the glucose detection aspect of a smart lens. The companies noted that work would continue on their smart accommodating contact lens and smart intraocular lens projects.
With an investment of this size, the company could be very active and have even more collaborations in 2019.