· Investment in CDMO for cell gene therapy product in North America and clinical trials in the U.S. such as stem cell therapy CARTISTEM® and SMUP-IA-01
· SKYLAKE and CRESCENDO, its largest shareholders, have an investment philosophy of seeking mutual growth by investing in high-tech domestic companies.
MEDIPOST (CEO: Yang Yoon-sun, KOSDAQ078160) announced on the 17th its plan to raise funds through the third-party allotment and change its largest shareholder to accelerate its entry into the North American market, the world’s largest market.
MEDIPOST plans to sign an investment agreement worth KRW 140 billion in total with Skylake Equity Partners (hereafter SKYLAKE) and Crescendo Equity Partners (hereafter CRESCENDO), both of which are management-participating investors and make all-out efforts to enhance corporate value.
SKYLAKE and CRESCENDO, which participated in this investment round, are private equity funds with an investment philosophy of seeking mutual growth in overseas markets by investing in high-tech domestic companies. Both companies, which already have successful investment track records in multiple industries, chose MEDIPOST as their first investee in the biotechnology sector.
This investment is worth KRW 140 billion and will be carried out in two phases. First, SKYLAKE and CRESCENDO will jointly invest in convertible bonds (CB) worth KRW 70 billion. After completing an investment agreement with a CDMO for cell gene therapy in North America, which MEDIPOST is negotiating exclusively with, both companies are planning to acquire an additional KRW 70 billion worth of convertible preferred shares (CPS).
In addition, both companies have entered into a share sale agreement totaling 400,000 shares among the shares held by CEO Yang Yoon-sun, and the payment will be made according to the fulfillment of the investment terms for convertible bonds and convertible preferred shares. When this investment round is completed, both companies will jointly participate in the management together with CEO Yang Yoon-sun as the largest shareholder with 20.7% shares of MEDIPOST after combining the convertible preferred shares with voting rights. If convertible bonds are converted into common stock, the largest shareholder’s stake will be expanded.
With the funds secured at this time, MEDIPOST plans to expedite its entry into the US osteoarthritis treatment market by using KRW 85 billion to invest in CDMO for cell gene therapy in North America, and KRW 55 billion for clinical trials in the U.S. for knee osteoarthritis drugs CARTISTEM® and SMUP-IA-01. Currently, MEDIPOST is negotiating for an exclusive right in North America with a CDMO for cell gene therapy and expects to sign an investment agreement in May.
An official from MEDIPOST emphasized, “This financing is important in that we have secured the largest shareholder who can actively support overseas business and laid the foundation for maximizing corporate value through aggressive overseas business promotion.” The official also said, “The fast-growing CDMO business for cell gene therapy is not only an optimal new business that can create synergy with our core competencies but also has important strategic significance as an efficient production and supply system for CARTISTEM® and SMUP-IA-01 clinical reagents in the U.S., as well as an effective means of production and supply after product approval.”
An official from SKYLAKE said, “We highly evaluated the global expansion potential of stem cell therapy such as MEDIPOST’s world-class stem cell selection and culture technology and CARTISTEM® and decided to invest in consideration of the synergy and growth potential with the fast-growing global cell gene therapy CDMO business.”
In addition, an official from CRESCENDO said, “Although MEDIPOST had an unrivaled market position in the field of stem cell therapy based on its excellent technology and commercial potential, it was having difficulties entering the global market.” The official added, “We decided to make this investment, confident that CRESCENDO’s overseas business experience and global network in the U.S. will help MEDIPOST grow into a global champion.”
Meanwhile, SKYLAKE and CRESCENDO’s investment will be deposited in the Korea Securities Depository for one year.
* Skylake Equity Partners (Co-CEO Jin Dae-je, Min Hyun-ki/http://www.skylakepe.com)
SKYLAKE is a first-generation private equity investment firm established in 2006 by Jin Dae-je, who served as president of Samsung Electronics and Ministry of Science and ICT, and it has successful track records in multiple industries including consumer goods/platforms as well as IT and manufacturing, which are major investment fields. As of the end of 2021, the accumulated assets under management are KRW 3.7 trillion, and SKYMEDI Limited participated in this investment.
* Crescendo Equity Partners (CEO Lee Ki-doo/http://www.crescendoep.com)
CRESCENDO is a private equity fund founded in 2012 by CEO Lee Ki-doo, a former Ph.D. in materials engineering at MIT, under the sponsorship of Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal, the world’s No. 1 online payment service company. It is using an investment strategy focused on value creation to discover domestic small and medium-sized enterprises with excellent technological capabilities and develop them into global champions through overseas market expansion, business area expansion, and M&A. It is focusing on future growth industries such as cutting-edge technology-related parts materials and equipment, software, B2B services, biotechnology, etc. As of the end of 2021, the accumulated assets under management are KRW 1.8 trillion, with Marvel 2022 Holdings Limited and Crescendo 3rd D Private Equity Joint Venture participating in this investment.