Roivant ups bet on Arbutus, after Axovant failure
Arbutus Biopharma, a Canadian developer of hepatitis B virus therapies, has agreed to a US$116 million investment from Roivant Sciences, the Swiss biotech company led by former hedge fund Vivek Ramaswamy. Roviant already held a 29.1% equity stake in Arbutus, which had a market cap of around $340 million as of Friday's market close.
Why it matters: Because Roivant really needs a win, less than two months after securing a $1.1 billion investment led by SoftBank Vision Fund. A publicly-traded subsidiary called Axovant Sciences — which issued the largest biotech IPO of all time — last week learned that its lead Alzheimer's drug candidate doesn't work, which sent its shares down from $24.25 to just $6.26 in a single day of trading.