European investment firm Tikehau Capital has partnered with Sprim Ventures, the venture arm of Singapore-based healthcare consulting firm, to launch a US$50 million early-stage VC fund, targeting medtech and lifesciences companies in Singapore.

Christened TKS1, the Singapore-based fund has also announced the first close. TKS1 aims to invest in innovative companies offering solutions that move science forward in the health sector, contribute to the transition from intervention to prediction, diagnosis and monitoring while enabling life science companies globally to develop therapeutics faster and more economically.

The typical investment size will be between US$500,000 and US$5 million.

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Bruno de Pampelonne, Chairman of Tikehau IM (the asset management subsidiary of Tikehau Capital), said: “Together with our partner Sprim, we have chosen to base our latest VC investment platform focusing on medtech and lifescience out of Singapore due to its reputation as a global innovation hub – stemming from strong government support, its robust R&D ecosystem with a wealth of research institutions, multinational medtech and lifescience companies, as well as a flourishing startup scene.”

“As such, we hope to be able to leverage TKS1 as a springboard to access some of the most exciting healthcare ventures in the market today that also provide favourable and sustainable returns for our investors,” added de Pampelonne.

TKS1 also said that it has already seed-invested in five companies: ObvioHealth (an online and mobile app to execute clinical-compliant trials; Fibronostics (a discovery platform developing non-invasive algorithm-based diagnostics to improve treatment outcomes, facilitate screening of specific diseases and help prognosis in various chronic conditions; Travecta Therapeutics (which develops novel chemistry for delivery of therapies to the brain); Babynostics (which aims to address unmet health needs such as pre-term birth and cognitive developmental problems in infants by providing pregnant women with infant milk and high-end supplements); and Evid Science (which is building a database of therapy evidence in the world to allow users to instantly compare therapy outcomes such as efficacy, safety and cost).