Paris, July 8, 2008 - Ariana(TM) Pharma, a provider of decision support tools to accelerate drug discovery, announces today that it has raised EUR 1.5 million through a private placement. This first round of venture capital funding was arranged by Vizille Capital Innovation, one of the venture capital subsidiaries of the Crédit Mutuel - CIC bank. The sole investor was VCI, which takes a minority stake alongside existing shareholders, the Institut Pasteur and company management.
Ariana has been mainly self funding until now and has established a rapidly growing software business through collaboration and licensing agreements with some of the largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, including Pfizer, GSK, Novartis and Lundbeck. It has continuously developed and enhanced its decision support tools with increased speed and data handling capacity as well as introducing specific support modules.
Its lead product is KEM(R) - knowledge extraction and management platform - designed to dramatically accelerate and improve the discovery, development and safety of pharmaceutical products. KEM comprehensively mines data, including data other systems neglect, and helps scientists take simultaneous decisions involving multiple criteria and objectives.
The new funding will be used to further develop Ariana's decision support tools, strengthen the company's sales and marketing and also enable it to add functionality to KEM that will enhance its use in clinical trials and drug safety domains, interfacing with current industry standards and providing the new ability to detect early signals.
"We welcome the new funding which will provide an additional boost to our activities as we expand further the capabilities of KEM," said Mohammad Afshar, Ariana Pharma's CEO. "We have successfully developed our business and established profitable partnerships with a number of pharma and biotech companies, and we look forward to moving into the next phase."
"Ariana now has a tried and tested technology which can be applied in a wide and growing market," said Karine Lignel, Director of Investments, Vizille Capital Innovation. "It also has a management team with experience in rapidly developing enterprises."
KEM(R) (Knowledge Extraction and Management) is a proprietary decision support technology for rapid analysis of multi-parametric and multi-objective data. Deployed in pharmaceutical companies, KEM(R) has a unique ability to translate analysis of data from multiple sources into successful decisions for the optimization of novel drug therapies. In clinical trials, KEM can fully characterize populations that are most responsive, as well as populations at risk, impacting the outcome of the trial as well as focusing the post launch marketing effort. Analyzing safety data on both failed and marketed products, KEM is able to identify relations that link both molecular features and the results of early tests with the risk of adverse events.
About Ariana Pharma
Ariana(TM) Pharma delivers pioneering multi objectives decision support tools to dramatically accelerate and improve the discovery, development and safety of pharmaceutical products. Its KEM(R) knowledge extraction and management platform comprehensively mines data, including data other systems neglect, and helps scientists take simultaneous decisions involving multiple criteria and objectives. The Company has established a rapidly growing software business through collaboration and licensing agreements with some of the largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Ariana was founded in 2003 and is headquartered in Paris, France.
About Vizille Capital Innovation
CIC - Vizille Capital Innovation is the venture capital subsidiary of the CIC - Banque de Vizille Group.
Its objective is to invest in promising technology companies in their early stages of development with a high growth potential in dynamic sectors such as information technologies, telecommunications, electronics, life sciences, new materials, and the environment.
CIC - Vizille Capital Innovation's policy is aimed at providing assistance over time (5-7 years) to high-tech start-ups, which will ultimately lead them on the right track to succeed. This involvement is achieved by working closely with the company through advices and networking, but without interfering in the day-to-day management of the company.
Investment levels are suited to each case - usually between EUR 0.5 and EUR 3 million - and injected gradually in several phases, as development needs rise. CIC - Vizille Capital Innovation always invests jointly with other financial partners, often as lead or co-lead investor.