28 Jul 2022

Animol Discovery, Inc. announces Series B financing of $34.0 million to advance its pipeline of novel veterinary pharmaceuticals

Financing round led by Novalis LifeSciences LLC

Marijn Dekkers, former CEO of Bayer AG, to join the Board of Directors

Douglas Hutchens, former Head of Drug Discovery & External Innovation, Global Development & Chief Veterinary Officer, Bayer Animal Health, joining as Chief Scientific Officer

Boston, MA- July 28, 2022 – Animol Discovery, Inc., a pioneer in veterinary pharmaceutical discovery, today announced it has raised $34.0 million in Series B financing. The investment was led by Novalis Lifesciences, with participation from Finistere Ventures and existing investor Anterra Capital. The proceeds allow the company to expand and advance its pipeline of novel active pharmaceutical ingredients through clinical development and further enhance its cutting-edge drug discovery platform.

The $40Bn animal health industry continues to demand novel medicines to treat infectious and chronic diseases in companion and production animals. Recent successes, such as Apoquel™ from Zoetis and Nexguard™ from Boehringer Ingelheim, demonstrate the potential to build towards blockbuster franchises in the sector with novel pharmaceutical products.

“Pet parents and livestock farmers continue to demand novel veterinary pharmaceuticals that can protect animals against diseases and improve quality of life.” said Andrew Plant PhD, chief executive officer, Animol Discovery. “Despite this strong demand, innovation is lagging. At Animol, we seek to address this innovation gap by leveraging the most advanced tools from human pharma to bring forward a wealth of new medicines that can benefit animals and the people who care for them.”

Founded in 2020 and incubated by Anterra Capital, Animol is pioneering the use of DNA Encoded Library (DEL) drug discovery technology coupled with powerful machine learning approaches to enable the rapid discovery of novel veterinary medicines.

“We have built Animol on the same cutting edge discovery techniques that we are using to disrupt drug discovery in human pharma (ZebiAI - acquired by Relay Therapeutics) and crop protection (Enko Chem)” said Philip Austin, Managing Partner at Anterra Capital. “Translating these tools to the massive opportunity available in veterinary pharma was the next obvious step and we are already seeing their use successfully build into a rich pipeline of promising compounds.”

Animol also announced that Marijn Dekkers PhD, founder & chairman of Novalis LifeSciences LLC will join the Board of Directors. Dr. Dekkers formerly served as the CEO of Bayer AG, and as the CEO of Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. At Bayer he oversaw one of the largest global animal health companies.

“Most current medicines in the $40B veterinary pharma market are derived from drugs that have been originally developed for humans. There is of course nothing wrong with that, but there are many animal-specific diseases that require a targeted effort. I like Animol Discovery’s approach to use its breakthrough drug discovery platform to specifically address significant unmet needs in animals. I am looking forward to working with the team to optimize the opportunity ahead,” said Dr. Dekkers.

“It is a great pleasure to be able to welcome Marijn Dekkers to our Board of Directors. Dr. Dekkers is an exceptional industry leader with a track record of turning innovation into successful businesses across the spectrum of life sciences, including in animal health,” said Andrew Plant PhD, chief executive officer, Animol Discovery. “He is an excellent addition to our team of experienced industry leaders.”

“I am also delighted to bring Doug Hutchens on board as chief scientific officer. Dr. Hutchens brings a wealth of industry experience in animal health research and product development; having someone who has also served as Chief Veterinary Officer within a major animal health company brings huge value to our expanding team,” added Dr. Plant.

“I am thrilled by the prospect of joining Animol’s dynamic and experienced team as chief scientific officer,” said Doug Hutchens, DVM, PhD. The company’s ability to interrogate protein targets with billions of DNA-tagged molecules and, using DNA sequencing, identify selective inhibitors from numerous diverse chemical families is game changing in animal health drug discovery. Leveraging these data with proprietary, highly predictive machine learning algorithms, is enabling the identification of novel drug-like compounds in a matter of weeks from the initial DEL screen. This technology platform greatly expands the opportunities, significantly increases the probability, and accelerates the timeline in developing new classes of therapeutic molecules.”

About Animol
Animol is a pioneer in using state of the art drug discovery technology to discover small molecule active pharmaceutical ingredients to transform standards of care in veterinary medicine. The company is reducing the time and cost to discover novel active ingredients utilizing DNA-encoded libraries, machine learning/AI and structure-based design. Animol is a private company based in Boston, Massachusetts.

About Novalis LifeSciences LLC
Novalis LifeSciences LLC is an investment and advisory firm for the Life Science industry that was founded in 2017 by Marijn E. Dekkers. With a team of experienced operating executives from the Life Science industry, Novalis funds and advises visionary Life Science entrepreneurs. In addition to making financial investments, Novalis provides strategic and operational advice to portfolio companies that are at a critical growth stage in their development. For more information, visit www.novalislifesciences.com

Dr. Andrew Plant
Animol Discovery, Inc.
[email protected]

15 Mar 2021

Former Head Of Business Development, Alliances And Solutions At Zoetis, Michelle Haven, Joins Animol Discovery Board Of Directors

Animol Discovery, a biotechnology company delivering break-through novel small molecule drugs for the animal health industry based on its unique technology platform, announced today that Michelle Haven has joined the company’s Board of Directors.

Dr. Haven, currently Senior Adviser and Venture Partner at Anterra Capital, comes to Animol with more than 25 years of experience in the animal health industry, most recently as Senior Vice President for Business Development, Alliances and Solutions at Zoetis, Inc. Prior to that, she led global pharmaceutical and biological research at Pfizer Animal Health for several years and contributed to the development of multiple successful products. Dr. Haven holds a DVM from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is board certified in the American College of Veterinary Surgeons and holds a Ph.D. in Physiology from North Carolina State University.

“I am excited to join the Board of Directors of Animol Discovery and look forward to working with the board and the company’s management team to advance Animol’s drug discovery program and to assist the company with its plan to further develop their unique discovery platform," said Dr. Haven. “I am convinced that Animol has a truly outstanding platform that will provide unprecedented capabilities to screen, discover and develop a large number of innovative small molecule drugs for veterinary medicine”.

“We are delighted to welcome Dr. Haven to our Board of Directors”, said Andrew Calabrese co-founder of Animol Discovery. “Her extensive experience in Animal Health Drug Discovery and Development as well as in building strong external partnerships around innovation will strengthen our Board of Directors”.

About Animol Discovery
Animol is a drug discovery company that leverages leading-edge advancements from biotechnology to build a proprietary pipeline of highly innovative pharmaceuticals for veterinary patients. Animol’s unique platform consists of advanced machine learning in combination with DNA-encoded chemical library screens. The Animol team of highly experienced R&D leaders from both human biotech and animal health is supported by best-in-class biotechnology partners and an extensive network of industry experts and scientists. Animol Discovery is a private company headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.

01 Jan 2020

Animol Discovery Announces $6 Million Series A Financing From Anterra Capital To Build High Value Pipeline Of Break-through Small Molecules For Animal Health

Animol Discovery, Inc. today announced receiving $6 million in Series A financing from Anterra Capital to identify and develop its own pipeline of break-through proprietary veterinary small molecules. Based on a unique platform of DNA-encoded libraries (DEL) in combination with advanced machine learning/AI, Animol will deliver unprecedented number of novel compounds in the areas of antiparasitics and therapeutics. Over the coming year Animol Discovery will identify and subsequently develop medicines for companion animals and livestock, either by itself or in cooperation with Animal Health companies.

Andrew Calabrese, Animol Discovery’s scientific co-founder, highlighted the outstanding potential of Animol’s platform to identify tailor-made pharmaceuticals for the Animal Health market: “The powerful combination of DEL and machine learning signifies a huge step forward in applying artificial intelligence to find better drugs. Being able to screen drug targets at much reduced time and cost allows us to address unmet medical needs in a broad range of indication areas.”

Animol Discovery is one of several startup companies incubated by Amsterdam and Boston based Anterra Capital. “With Animol Discovery we continue our successful strategy of leveraging cutting-edge technology originally developed for human health to innovate and create value in underserved industries such as Animal Health”, said Philip Austin, Managing Partner at Anterra Capital.

About Animol Discovery
Animol is a drug discovery company that leverages leading-edge advancements from biotechnology to build a proprietary pipeline of highly innovative pharmaceuticals for veterinary patients. The Animol team of highly experienced R&D leaders from both human biotech and animal health is supported by best-in-class biotechnology partners and an extensive network of industry experts and scientists. Animol Discovery is a private company headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.

About Anterra
Anterra Capital is a specialist venture capital investor dedicated to financing the growth of technology-driven companies with incredible potential in food, agriculture and animal health. Anterra is a provider of patient strategic capital as part of a global network of growth capital funds supported by financial services multinationals Rabobank and Fidelity. For more information, see www.anterracapital.com.