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MIT to the NYSE: Journey from University Tech to M&A


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This presentation was given by David Lucchino and Chris Loose, co-founders of Semprus BioSciences, Corp. It describes the process of how Lucchino and Loose grew Semprus BioSciences from their lab at MIT to what it is today! The presentation outlines certain rules and practices other startup founders can follow for finding funding and mentorship.

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MIT to the NYSE: Journey from University Tech to M&A

  1. 1. MIT to the NYSE: The Journal from a University Technology to an M&A David Lucchino and Chris Loose, PhD Co-Founders Semprus BioSciences, Corp. The Venture Development Center at the University of Massachusetts Boston November 12, 2014
  2. 2. 2 I believe that here in this room…
  3. 3. 3 …is someone who will change the world through an innovative solution.
  4. 4. 4 The Semprus journey started with a 131-word email.
  5. 5. 5
  6. 6. 6 Unknown ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– From: Christopher R. Loose (crloose@MIT.EDU) Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2005 8:14pm To: lucchino@MIT.EDU Subject: 50K Opportunity with Bob Langer Mr. Lucchino, I am working with Bob Langer on the development of novel antimicrobials, with the idea of creating antimicrobials catheters and implants. We both believe our approach may have advantages over existing antimicrobials products. I presented him a summary of our recent data and he suggested I contact you as a potential partner for the MIT 1K competition this Fall and the 50K competition in the Spring. Would you have any interest in exploring this opportunity? If so, I would be happy to meet early next week to go over some of our thoughts and show you what we have accomplished. The deadline for the 1K is Nov 14th, so we would need to start moving quickly. Information is available at I look forward to hearing from you. Sincerely, Chris Loose
  7. 7. 7 Three Steps to Validating and Commercializing our Idea
  8. 8.  Understood problem: 100k deaths, $30B cost  Existing, short-term technologies validate business model  Clear opportunity for long-term solution  510(k) catheter with large market and fast development path 2006  Sold for $80M to Teleflex (NYSE: TFX)  $29M in VC financing  $5M US Army and DoD  Regulatory OK for first product – Nylus ™ PICC  Built a team of 38 FTE 2012  Novel antimicrobial technology from Langer Lab  Identified medical device surfaces as target market  Generated proof-of- concept data  Obtained initial IP 2003-2006
  9. 9. Five Steps to Company Formation: 1. Product Company 2. Platform Technology 3. Seminal paper in top journal (Science, Nature) 4. Seminal (ideally blocking) patent(s) 5. In vivo proof of principle Bob Langer’s Five Rules
  10. 10. Beachhead - PICC R. S. Smith et al., Sci Transl Med 2012;4:153ra132 $400M market device, ~40% failure rate during use
  11. 11. R. S. Smith et al., Sci Transl Med 2012;4:153ra132 Platform Performance Reduction in Platelet adhesion Reduction in Thrombus accumulation 98.9% 100% Reduced Thrombosis after 60 Days in Industry Standard Test Reduced Infection in Rabbit Model
  12. 12.  Confirm the unmet need- Dr. Dennis Maki – World’s expert on antimicrobial catheters  Who has been there/done that - Greg Haas – Led R&D at antimicrobial catheter company  How to make it - Dr. Art Coury – Industrial Biomaterials Guru  Selling in this space - Dave McClellan – Former CEO Navilyst, Group President at Boston Scientific Corp. Assembling Critical Advisors
  13. 13. – $2M Seed Round • $1M from Harvard Business School professors and private investors and $1M from venture capital – $8M Series A • A syndicate of two (2) venture capital firms – $18M Series B • A syndicate of four (4) venture capital firms – Non-Dilutive Funding • Over $9M raised • US Department of Defense, National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Congressional Appropriation and Department of Energy Raising Money…
  14. 14.  Timing is everything – Committed team to execute – When ready to accelerate value creation – Confidence in intellectual property  Who to ask? – Professional network– those who can add value – Be cautious with friends and family – Initial funding; SBIR, other non-dilutive sources – VCs can be your partners, at the right time When to Raise Money…
  15. 15. Summing It up…  Entrepreneurial Competitions – A good “spring training”  Building a team – Getting people to work with uncertainty  The dynamic path to achieving goals  Keep thinking BIG!
  16. 16. 16 Rules of the Road
  17. 17. 17 We live in a world with limited time and limited resources.
  18. 18. 18 Know what your technology can do and what it can’t.
  19. 19. 19
  20. 20. 20 We stand apart by standing together.
  21. 21. 21 A big problem and a small problem typically take the same amount of effort to solve.
  22. 22. 22 You are required to fly the plane as you are building it.
  23. 23. 23 The only thing we can guarantee about entrepreneurship is change. Adapt or die!
  24. 24. 24 This journey can not only be about making money.
  25. 25. 25 And, our biggest Rule of the Road…
  26. 26. 26 Nothing Comes Without Risk.
  27. 27. 27 Thank You
  28. 28. “I worry about CVC infections every day… our medical center would be very interested in a Semprus clinical study.” - John Mullen, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center The ability to control hospital based infections would add tens of millions of dollars straight to a medical center’s bottom line.” - John Paul, former CFO, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Input from All Parties Needed for Adoption “Infections reporting enhances the reputation and credibility of all medical centers, two increasingly critical aspects of our character.” - Paul Levy, CEO, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center