VC Polaris Partners Raises $450M For New Health Fund

Published: Nov 25, 2014

VC Polaris Partners Raises $450M For New Health Fund

November 25, 2014

By Riley McDermid, Breaking News Editor

Boston-based venture capital shop Polaris Partners has raised $450 million for a seventh fund, as the company attempts to tackle the both halves of its software and life sciences silos.

Polaris’s new fund overshot its initial filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this year by a whopping $50 million, a sign that both VCs and the capital market remain hot on biotech after a rash of IPOs this fall.

Its last fund raised $375 million in 2010, a paltry offering after its legacy 2006 fund size of $1 billion—a number that was greatly depleted by the recession and general correction of the capital markets globally in the four intervening years.

The VC outfit has also downsized in other ways: Its Dogpatch Labs incubator, originally had offices in San Francisco, Boston, New York, Silicon Valley and Dublin. But these days, only Dublin remains as the others have shut up shop or moved on to different companies or market interests.

Polaris has long been linked with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s research labs and incubators and has had good luck betting on mid-stage companies. In the last three years it has seen a suite of its fledgling firms go public, including Cerulean Pharma, Genocea Biosciences, Acceleron Pharma, T2 Biosystems and Bind Therapeutics.

Polaris did not say in its filing what types of companies it would be pursuing, but the fund is certainly a sign to the overall community that the firm is ready to place some new bets as biotech booms.

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