Colorado Life Sciences Companies Raise a Record $2.4 Billion in 2021
By: Colorado BioScience Association Date: 12/14/2021
Major IPOs, Venture Capital Funding, and Government Funding Accelerate Health Innovation
DENVER – Colorado’s life sciences ecosystem raised $2.4 billion in 2021, a new record for the fast-growing community that includes companies at all stages of commercialization and academic and research institutions. The 2021 fundraising total is double the $1.2 billion raised by the Colorado life sciences community in 2020. Sources of funding included headline-making IPOs, significant additional capital raised in public markets, an infusion of venture capital, and grants from federal and state sources.
High-profile initial public offerings contributed to the record-high total, with Edgewise Therapeutics raising $202 million in its March 2021 NASDAQ debut and SomaLogic generating $630 million when it went public in September 2021 via a SPAC. In all, Colorado companies raised more than $1.3 billion in public capital, over $457 million in private capital through venture capital and other private investments, and more than $167 million through mergers and acquisitions.
Elyse Blazevich, President & CEO of Colorado BioScience Association, says:
“Colorado’s reputation as a leading North American hub for health innovation continues to accelerate with record-breaking financings of $2.4 billion in 2021. This is the fifth consecutive year that our life sciences community has raised more than $1 billion. Colorado BioScience Association works to secure capital and growth opportunities for organizations at all stages of commercialization because growth comes when the companies behind life-saving breakthroughs get the financial support they need.”
Venture Capital Totals
|Pre-Seed and Seed||$2.4 million|
|Series A and B||$240.4 million|
|Series C, D, and E||$150.0 million|
|Venture Capital – Series Unknown||$54.9 million|
Additionally, federal funding totaling more than $430 million supported critical life sciences research and development at Colorado companies and academic and research institutions. Sources of federal grants for life sciences in Colorado included the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), Department of Defense, Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Science Foundation (NSF), many of which are deployed through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.
The University of Colorado system, and Colorado State University were the state’s largest recipients of federal grants, all from the National Institutes of Health.
Michael Crews, Vice President of Colorado BioScience Association, says:
“We are proud of the companies in our ecosystem that landed federal funding and state grants. Colorado’s Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant program provides critical funding for our start-up and mid-stage companies. Often, the state grants provide the bridge funding companies need to prepare them to seek federal grants or venture capital funding. CBSA collaborates with our partners at the state Office of Economic Development and International Trade to preserve and expand this vital state funding of our innovators and job creators.”
The State of Colorado awarded more than $8 million in Advanced Industries Accelerator Grants to 31 Colorado life sciences companies and university researchers in 2021 with grants up to $250,000. As a designated Advanced Industry in Colorado, the life sciences ecosystem makes a significant contribution to the state’s diverse and fast-growing economy, creating high-paying jobs for more than 32,000 Coloradans.
Colorado Life Sciences Financing History – Five-Year Totals
2017: $1.2 billion
2018: $1 billion
2019: $850 million, $12.1 billion including Pfizer acquisition of Array Biopharma
2020: $1.2 billion, $2.6 billion including Invitae acquisition of ArcherDX
2021: $2.4 billion
Colorado BioScience Association tracks annual life sciences financings using publicly available sources, including company news releases, media reports, SEC filings, federal and state databases, and Crunchbase.
About Colorado BioScience Association
Colorado BioScience Association (CBSA) creates co-opportunity for the Colorado life sciences community. CBSA champions a collaborative life sciences ecosystem and advocates for a supportive business climate. From concept to commercialization, member companies and organizations drive global health innovations, products, and services that improve and save lives. The association leads Capital and Growth, Education and Networking, Policy and Advocacy, and Workforce Cultivation to make its members stronger, together. Learn more: cobioscience.com
Primavera Group for Colorado BioScience Association