Vensana Closes Inaugural Fund With $225 Million In Committed Capital

By Dan Anderson ● September 9, 2019
  • Vensana Capital announced it closed an inaugural fund called Vensana Capital I with $225 million in committed capital

Vensana Capital has announced the closing of its inaugural fund called Vensana Capital I with $225 million in committed capital. The fund was oversubscribed and it was raised from a range of institutional investors including public pensions, university endowments, foundations, leading academic health systems, family offices, and fund-of-funds.

As a venture capital and growth equity investment firm, Vensana Capital seeks to partner with innovative medical technology companies in their clinical development and commercial stages. And medtech sub-sectors of interest to the firm include medical devices, diagnostics and data science, drug delivery, digital health, and tech-enabled services. Versant Ventures has supported the launch of the independent new firm and will continue to provide strategic advisory, fund administration, and operations support going forward.

Vensana’s team is known for having a proven track record of identifying, financing, and building medtech companies to establish new standards of care in their field. And Vensana co-founders Kirk Nielsen and Justin Klein, MD, JD were previously leading medtech-focused investors at Versant Ventures and New Enterprise Associates, respectively.

In the aggregate, they led capital raises for healthcare startup companies in excess of $1 billion with which entrepreneurs have obtained U.S. approval for nearly three dozen products that have treated hundreds of thousands of patients and have generated billions in cumulative revenue. And many of those innovations have been first- or best-in-class therapies supported by robust clinical evidence and have delivered bellwether exits within the sector.

“Our team aims to be the capital partner of choice for leading medtech entrepreneurs, investors, and strategics. Together, we share a deep, personal commitment to medtech entrepreneurship and innovation, and we believe in the opportunity to build great companies that can both improve the lives of patients and deliver exceptional returns for our partners,” said Klein.

Vensana (derived from the Latin root for “health”) features an investment team that is led by Klein and Nielsen as Managing Partners and includes principal Cynthia Yee and senior associate Greg Banker as well as an advisory board comprised of senior operating executives, entrepreneurs, and policy experts from across the medtech sector.

“We are grateful for the trust and confidence of our limited partners, and for the support of the Versant team, in launching Vensana Capital,” added managing partner Kirk Nielsen. “Medtech will continue to play a critical role in the healthcare system of the future, and we are excited to partner with entrepreneurs whose innovations will improve outcomes and lower the cost of care.”

Vensana’s investment team has a history of successfully partnering with management teams behind industry-leading companies such as Cameron Health, CardiAQ, Cartiva, CV Ingenuity, Epix Therapeutics, Lutonix, Neuwave Medical, Sequent Medical, Topera, Ulthera, and Vertiflex. With $3.2 billion under management and offices in the U.S., Canada and Europe, Versant Ventures has built a team with deep investment, operating, and R&D expertise that enables a hands-on approach to company building.

Versant Ventures was founded in 1999 and 75 Versant companies have achieved successful acquisitions or IPOs. Currently, Versant is investing out of its seventh fund called Versant Venture Capital VII — which is a $600 million biotech fund closed in December 2018. Plus the firm is continuing to invest out of its Canadian strategic fund called Versant Voyageurs I and its opportunity fund called Versant Vantage I.

“We are very proud of Vensana reaching this critical milestone and in the overall achievements of Kirk and Justin in launching this unique platform to foster development of novel products and valuable companies in such an important sector of the life science ecosystem,” explained Versant chairman and managing director Brad Bolzon, Ph.D.