Infinity merger means exit for VCs

VC-backed cancer drug discovery company Infinity Pharmaceutical is to merge with Discovery Partners International, a NASDAQ-listed company, representing an exit for its US and European investors. Infinity, which is based in Massachusetts in the US, will own 69% of the new entity, which will trade under the Infinity name.

Venture investors in the business include Advent Venture Partners, Amgen,

Boston University Community Technology, HBM Partners, Novartis, Prospect Venture Partners, Tallwood Venture Capital, Venrock Associates and Vulcan Capital.

Infinity received its first venture investment in August 2001 from Prospect and Venrock and held four further funding rounds, including raising US$70m in July 2002 in the year’s biggest biotech fundraising in the US.

Infinity has a lead product in several Phase I clinical trials, a second product scheduled to enter the clinic in late 2006, a pipeline of proprietary small molecule preclinical candidates and partnerships with Novartis, Johnson & Johnson and Amgen. It is anticipated the merged company with have in excess of US$100m cash.