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Temasek fund invests US$800m in Alphabet subsidiary
[SAN FRANCISCO] Singapore-based sovereign fund Temasek will invest US$800 million in Verily, the Alphabet subsidiary focused on healthcare announced on Thursday.
The infusion of cash, for which Temasek will get a minority stake, comes as Verily works to bring some of its creations to market.
The bulk of the money will be pumped into Verily in the coming days, and the rest in the second half of this year, according to Verily, formerly known as Google Life Sciences but rebranded after the internet giant became Alphabet in a corporate restructuring.
Verily is among Alphabet's "big bets" as the Silicon Valley giant stretches beyond its core and lucrative online search business for innovative new opportunities.
Verily specialises in applying technology to problems in health and biology. An idea being discussed is the building of a sickness-sensing diagnostic device along the lines of the "tricorder" seen in Star Trek science fiction films and television shows.
Verily said in a release that it is creating tools and easy-to-use platforms to gather deep and broad sets of health information, and organise them in ways that let actions be taken.
"With a substantial network and insights into the economies in Asia, Temasek will provide valuable guidance as we look to ex-US markets with our development partners," Verily Chief Executive Andrew Conrad said in a release.
To date, Verily is one of the few other bets at Alphabet that is making money.
Verily last year teamed with French pharmaceutical group Sanofi to "combine devices, software, medicine and professional care" to manage diabetes.
Verily also collaborates with Britain-based GlaxoSmithKline on "bioelectronic medicine", which it described as treating ailments by using miniature, implantable devices that can modify the body's electrical signals.