San Diego’s Amplyx Pharmaceuticals is beefing up its executive team and tacking on an additional $8.7 million to its recent Series B round, upping the total for that round to $49.2 million.
A new investor, 3X5 Partners, joins RiverVest Venture Partners, New Enterprise Associates, and BioMed Ventures in the round.
With the new funds, Amplyx says it has the cash it needs to get its lead antifungal agent APX001 through Phase 1 clinical trials.
Amplyx has had no trouble raising money since bringing Mike Grey on board as CEO last year. Grey was the founder and former CEO of Lumena Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Shire in 2014 for $260 million). He also worked as a venture capitalist at Pappas Ventures, where he used his familiarity with the industry to find sound investments. As a veteran of the industry, investors consider Grey a pretty safe bet.
“When venture capitalists see (guys like Grey) go into a new company, they want to jump back on the train,” said Mike Krenn, president of San Diego Venture Group.
And Amplyx is bringing more industry veterans on board. In tandem with the financing, the company announced that it's expanding its executive team. The company recruited Pfizer anti-infective expert Michael Hodges as chief medical officer, former Trius Therapeutics executive Karen Shaw as vice president of biology, and ex-Lumena regulatory head Elizabeth Gordon to serve as vice president of regulatory affairs.
Amplyx has raised a total of $51.5 million in venture capital and received more than $10 million in grants from the National Institutes of Health to support its drug discovery and development efforts. The company's research operations are located at Johnson & Johnson Innovation, JLABS in San Diego.