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12:00 AM
 | 
Mar 04, 2013
 |  BioCentury  |  Finance

EdRIP's exit mantra

10 years on, Rothschild's EdRIP still exit driven with new life science fund

As Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners begins its second decade, it is moving to increase its footprint outside of Europe. With 18 life science exits since its inception in 2002, EdRIP believes its ability to consistently provide liquidity will allow the firm to expand a fledgling international LP base and the scope of its investments in Asia and the U.S.

EdRIP is the private equity arm of La Compagnie Financiere Edmond de Rothschild Banque, which takes a 10% stake in all EdRIP investments.

The firm began returning money to investors in 2004 and has had at least one exit every year, including two liquidity events during the 2008-09 economic crisis.

EdRIP's story as a life science VC is one of increasing scale, with fund sizes growing from €27 million ($25.4 million) for BioDiscovery 1 in 2000 to a targeted €200 million ($267.6 million) for its current fund, BioDiscovery 4.

Last July, EdRIP raised €125 million ($153.6 million) in the first close of the fund. It is currently at €169 million ($226.2 million), according to President Pierre-Michel Passy.

The balance will come out of a €500 million ($672.2 million) fundraising planned over the next four years, the bulk of which will go to two new funds managed separately from the firm's life science activities. Those funds will target growth capital and leveraged buyout opportunities in the distribution, equipment goods, Internet and service sectors.

The new funds would bring the firm's assets under management to €1.3 billion ($1.7 billion).

BioDiscovery 4's first investment is expected to close soon.

Beginnings

The firm originated within La Compagnie Financiere Edmond de Rothschild Banque in 1990. By 1999, Passy and a small team made 15 life science investments of €400,000-€1.5 million on behalf of the bank.

Those investments delivered a 29% IRR to investors, who then asked the team to establish a sector-specific fund.

In 2000, EdRIP closed BioDiscovery 1 at €27 million. The firm expanded its life science management team in 2001 with the addition of Partner Raphael Wisniewski and in 2002 by adding Partner Gilles Nobecourt.

At the end of 2002, EdRIP became a subsidiary of the bank.

BioDiscovery 1 invested €1-€2.5 million in 19 therapeutic, medical device and diagnostic companies, most of which were in discovery or preclinical research. EdRIP led or co-led four of the rounds.

Three-quarters of the...

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