$44 Million in Venture Deals for Massachusetts Firms; HemaQuest and Virtual Iron Lead the Way
It’s a big day for Massachusetts startups, with the news that four local companies have secured some $44 million in venture financing. Three were biotech firms, and virtualization specialist Virtual Iron, perhaps riding the wave of VMware’s big IPO, was the lone IT firm.
Topping the list of fund-raisers was HemaQuest Pharmaceuticals of Newton. The developer of blood-disorder treatments announced it had secured $20 million in Series A financing from a group led by Lilly Ventures, De Novo Ventures, and Forward Ventures.
Two other local biotech startups, Ascent Therapeutics of Sherborn and Cambridge-based Bikam Pharmaceuticals, also secured financing. A regulatory filing indicates that Ascent, which develops drugs targeting cancer and various inflammatory diseases, has secured $8 million of a $19 million Series A round. Its funders include Novartis BioVentures, TVM, and Healthcare Ventures. Meanwhile, Bikam took in $3.6 million of a Series A round totaling $11 million, also according to regulatory filings. Both items were reported by peHUB.
Waving the fund-raising flap for IT firms was Lowell-based Virtual Iron, which we profiled just a few days ago. The company, which makes software to maximize the efficiency of computers by allowing them to simultaneously run multiple applications on multiple operating systems, closed $13 million in Series D funding, bringing its total to more than $44 million raised. According to PE Week, the Brookside Group took part in the round, joining previous backers GS Capital Partners, Highland Capital Partners, Intel Capital, Matrix Partners, and SAP Ventures.