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Nestlé Health Science Formalises Partnership with Flagship Ventures to Fuel Nutritional Therapy Pipeline

05 May 2015

Vevey, Switzerland, 5 May 2015 – The strategic innovation partnership between Nestlé Health Science and Flagship Ventures, originally announced in January 2015, has now been formalised as part of Flagship Ventures Fund V, a USD537 million, oversubscribed venture capital fund that closed in March 2015. AstraZeneca and Bayer CropScience are also strategic innovation partners in the fund. A portion of the partnership’s funding will be dedicated to investing in entrepreneurial companies developing breakthrough technologies in the novel nutritional therapy arena relevant to Nestlé Health Science, including brain, gastrointestinal and metabolic health. The financial terms of the partnership are not being disclosed.

Much of Flagship’s successful 15-year track record of venture funding and creation has been built in the healthcare field, specifically in therapeutics. Through the partnership, Nestlé Health Science will gain access to Flagship’s unique model of entrepreneurial innovation through acquisitions, minority stakes, licensing and joint-ventures.

Greg Behar, CEO of Nestlé Health Science commented: “This partnership with Flagship, a leading venture capital and venture creation firm in the field, will deepen our involvement at the frontier of nutritional innovation from a scientific and entrepreneurial perspective. Cost effective, safe and clinically proven nutritional therapies – that realize the potential of nutrients to impact disease and health states at a physiological level – have a big role to play in addressing the intensifying healthcare challenges and unmet clinical needs. This fund creates multiple opportunities that can directly relate into our pipeline and portfolio over time.”

Dr. Noubar Afeyan, Senior Managing Partner and CEO of Flagship Ventures, added, “Partnering with Nestlé Health Science will help raise awareness on the importance of the therapeutic role of nutrition in healthcare. Nutrition in treatment paradigms is often under-recognized, and we share Nestlé Health Science’s commitment to advancing the development of nutritional therapies that help change the course in healthcare.”

As part of its drive to build-up its capabilities in the area of novel therapeutic nutrition, Nestlé Health Science announced in January 20115 an investment in Seres Health, a Cambridge (near Boston, MA, USA) based company pursuing novel therapeutics based on the human microbiome. Nestlé Health Science’s Novel Therapeutic Nutrition HQ will be based in Cambridge (USA) to take advantage of being present within one of the world's leading life sciences innovation hubs.

About Flagship Ventures

Realizing entrepreneurial innovation is the mission of Flagship Ventures. Founded in 2000, the firm has launched 30 companies while investing in another 50. Flagship manages $1.4 billion in capital and is active in three principal sectors: therapeutics, health technologies, and sustainability. Flagship’s current portfolio includes Acceleron (NASDAQ: XLRN), Agios (NASDAQ: AGIO), BIND Therapeutics (NASDAQ: BIND), Concert Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: CNCE), Eleven Biotherapeutics (NASDAQ: EBIO), T2 Biosystems (NASDAQ: TTOO), Tetraphase (NASDAQ: TTPH) as well as several private companies: Editas Medicine, Pronutria Biosciences, Seres Health and Moderna Therapeutics. For more information, please visit