Temasek’s CLA Real Estate sets up life sciences investment company

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CLA Real Estate Holdings, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Temasek, has established a new company called ClavystBio to invest in life sciences companies and develop an innovation district in Singapore.

Launched on Thursday (Sept 15), ClavystBio will be led by CEO Dr Christopher Laing, who is vice dean of innovation and entrepreneurship at the Duke-NUS Medical School until November. (See amendment note)

It aims to support early-stage companies, starting with the emerging fields of cell and gene therapy, biomarkers and digital health.

ClavystBio has already made US$220 million in investment commitments to 6 early-stage companies and 3 venture partners. The companies are Allay Therapeutics, CoV Biotechnology, Engine Biosciences, Hummingbird Bioscience, Medisix Therapeutics and Sunbird Bio.

It also made commitments to US and Singapore-based investor Accelerator Life Science Partners, global venture firm Lightstone Ventures and US healthcare investor Polaris Partners.

Beyond investments, ClavystBio plans to develop a purpose-built innovation district with collaborative life sciences infrastructure and specialised facilities, together with a community of academics, investors and startups.

In addition, it will create programmes with private and public partners to develop industry and market expertise and drive intellectual property translation. Ecosystem-building makes Singapore an attractive location for life sciences companies to start and grow, said Dr Laing.

He added: "Our unique model brings funding, partnerships and an optimal physical environment to life sciences companies, so that they can accelerate their pathway to commercialisation and help benefit end-users or patients more quickly."

ClavystBio's board is chaired by Dr Fidah Alsagoff, joint head of the Singapore enterprise development group and head of life sciences at Temasek.

"As a long-term investor in the life sciences field, Temasek is committed to deploying patient capital to catalyse innovative solutions that will improve the well-being of current and future generations," said Dr Alsagoff, adding that ClavystBio is well-positioned to create a sustainable pipeline of investible opportunities.

The life sciences sector currently employs 25,000 workers and contributes to about a fifth of Singapore's manufacturing GDP, ClavystBio noted.

Amendment note: ClavystBio initially said that Dr Laing was previously with Duke-NUS, but has since clarified that he will retain his position there until November.

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