The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, today announced the initial closing of Fountain Healthcare Partners II, L.P. with €85 million of committed capital. The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland has made a €15 million commitment to the Fund with the majority of the balance of funding coming from institutional investors including through the Irish Strategic Investment Fund and the European Investment Fund (EIF).
This is Fountain Healthcare Partners second Fund. The fund is a dedicated life sciences (specialty pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices and diagnostics) venture capital (VC) firm and brings Fountain's total capital under management to €158 million. Over the lifetime of the Fund it is expected to make 10-15 investments.
Analysis of the Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2007-2012 indicates that for every €100 million invested as part of the Scheme, more than €70 million of that is invested in Irish companies, with the creation of over 1,000 jobs here.
Today's announcement will result in an increase in the availability of funding for innovative companies in the life sciences sector in Ireland to support company development, growth and job creation.
Making the announcement Minister Bruton said: "A key part of the Government's Action Plan for Jobs is putting in place new sources of credit for Irish businesses, as part of our drive to create a powerful engine of Irish enterprise. Over the past three years we have established new finance schemes which are making available a total of well over €2 billion to Irish businesses.
"International evidence shows that the presence of a dynamic seed and venture industry is crucial to this. To support more innovative and internationally oriented start-ups that can go fast to market and scale, we must increase the availability of venture capital to facilitate company growth and job creation. In this context, I am delighted to welcome the establishment of this new €85m venture capital fund from Fountain Healthcare. This will increase the availability of funding for the innovative Irish life sciences companies we are trying to support – and help them grow faster and ultimately create the jobs we need right around the country".
Dr Manus Rogan, co-Founder and Managing Partner at Fountain commented: "Fountain's investment strategy focuses on building a balanced portfolio of companies with complimentary risk and return profiles within the life sciences sector. This strategy has resulted in both strong absolute and relative returns from our first fund. The performance of our first fund is reflected in both the level and quality of new and existing investor participation in Fund II. With €85 million raised we are also pleased to have exceeded our initial close target of €75 million against a widely accepted challenging fundraising backdrop in the venture capital sector."
Julie Sinnamon, CEO Enterprise Ireland, commented: "I would like to congratulate Fountain Healthcare Partners on their success in raising their second fund. Enterprise Ireland looks forward to working with the team to drive the further development and growth of the Irish life sciences sector".
Eugene O'Callaghan, Director of the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, said: "Innovation in the life sciences sector offers great potential for the Irish economy and Fountain has a proven investment team in this field. Investing in this fund is consistent with the ISIF's twin objectives of generating commercial investment returns and supporting economic activity and employment in Ireland".