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12:00 AM
 | 
Mar 21, 2011
 |  BioCentury  |  Emerging Company Profile

Nimbus: Navigating waterworld

Nimbus combines in silico discovery, quick liquidity model; Bill Gates invests

Nimbus Discovery LLC is based on an Atlas Venture model that uses a virtual approach to drug discovery and puts each target program into a separate subsidiary, thus making the assets easier to sell early in the development process. The biotech and VC hope the result will be more efficient use of capital and reduced time to liquidity.

The approach mirrors that taken by the VC's Atlas Venture Development Corp., which is looking to develop clinical candidates and then sell or partner them without the traditional trappings that go with company formation (see BioCentury, Feb. 28).

"When a pharma partner wants to buy a program, it's a very clean package," said Bruce Booth of Atlas, who is also chairman and co-founder of Nimbus.

"Instead of the classic problem of platform companies that have to wait six or seven years for an exit, every transaction will generate some liquidity. Also, milestones that pay back over time will flow back to shareholders. We'll see a...

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