Arch Venture Partners an American VC firm — launches USD3 bn biomedical funds with an eye on Japanese startups

U.S.- based Arch Venture Partners has launched a USD3 bn venture capital fund specializing in medical technologies, one of the world’s largest of its kind, with Japanese startups among its potential targets.

The new fund will add about 40 companies to its portfolio over three to four years, Arch co-founder Keith Crandell told Nikkei. It will invest capital from universities and institutional investors in emerging enterprises, with a focus on cutting-edge technology in such fields as drug development, genome editing, and cell therapy.

Arch looks to invest in Japanese startups, which often have advanced technology but lack the know-how or capital to bring them to market. Promising players in genome editing, for example, include EditForce, founded at Kyushu University, and Bio Palette launched at Kobe University.

Arch will work with Japanese partners, such as biotech-focused venture capital firm Fast Track Initiative, to choose targets here.

The firm hopes to support startups’ development within a global framework, Crandell said. Arch also plans to connect emerging companies with large, established ones.

Established in 1986, Arch invests in startups in a range of fields, including semiconductors and quantum computing, with biotechnology as its main focus. Its funds have more than USD9 bn in assets under management.

Flagship Pioneering, another American venture capital firm that supported COVID-19 vaccine developer Moderna, closed a roughly USD3.4 bn biotech fund in 2021.

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Abhay Tiwari

Social Entrepreneur | ScientistPage Inc. | Tokyo Institute of Technology