CVCA Member Profiles

CVCA New Member Profile: Finchley Healthcare Ventures

Mosaique Finchley 1

Welcome back to our CVCA Central series, where we spotlight our members, offering insights into the organizations that play a critical role in our community. This time, we’re featuring Finchley Healthcare Ventures.

Tell us about Finchley Healthcare Ventures.

Finchley Healthcare Ventures (FHCV) is a Canadian venture capital fund specializing in investments within the rapidly evolving landscape of life sciences. The fund was founded in 2022 by David Goodman, the current President of FHCV and the previous and long-standing executive and Chief Executive Officer of Pharmascience Inc., the largest Canadian-owned pharmaceutical company founded 40 years ago.

Located in Montreal, Finchley’s team is motivated by a common passion for advancing healthcare and a dedication to supporting the development of new and transformative medicines that address significant unmet medical needs for the benefit of patients worldwide.

Finchley believes in focusing on the global life science industry, and more specifically on therapeutics. Indeed, a combination of three major trends make it one of the most attractive markets in its view: technological breakthroughs in biology which accelerate the path from discovery to clinical implementation, a growing demand for novel medical products from the population, especially those for aging and chronic diseases, and finally an upcoming patent cliff which stimulates the pharmaceutical industry’s appetite for new products.

What is the focus of Finchley Healthcare Ventures?

At Finchley Healthcare Ventures, we invest in biotech companies that develop novel therapies, as well as in venture capital funds specializing in life sciences where we leverage their expertise and network to access a diverse range of investment opportunities. 

Our direct investments can be in companies at the late preclinical or clinical stage in any therapeutic area as long as their focus is on a disease that is not adequately addressed with current therapies. We select companies that have a novel and promising approach aimed at significantly improving the lives of affected patients. We have no geographical restriction and work with scientists, entrepreneurs and investors around the world. We specifically look for companies where we can provide value added service and knowledge.

One of the keys to successful venture capital investing in therapeutics is deep technical expertise covering each stage of the drug development process, from target discovery, lead optimization, preclinical analysis, clinical trials and finally reimbursement and market access. To help our portfolio companies grow and bring their products to patients, our team taps into our extensive network of experienced professionals with backgrounds in medicine, pharmaceutical R&D, manufacturing, and commercialization. The insights, advice, strategic direction, and connections we provide can maximize portfolio companies’ chances of success by reducing hurdles in their drug development journey.

In the current economic environment, there is a lot of demand for capital, top talent and expertise. Our job is to evaluate which teams have the most promising ideas, as well as the capacity to see them through to the clinic. We are privileged to meet many talented and innovative companies in Canada and abroad, that are driven by the desire to transform healthcare. Diving through their science and hearing their stories is the most rewarding part of the job” says Gabrielle Bertier, Senior Analyst at FHCV. 

Tell us about the key people at Finchley Healthcare Ventures.

All along his career at Pharmascience, David Goodman has been driven by a passion for innovation, and a deeply rooted conviction that cultivating creativity in research and development is the key to better serving patients. Being more and more exposed to the Canadian and international biotechnology ecosystem, he understood the catalytic role played by venture capital in supporting the transition of novel ideas into life-saving products for patients. In 2021, he formalized the idea of creating an independent Venture Capital entity to support this bold vision, and Finchley Healthcare Ventures was born in 2022. With the launch of our independent venture capital fund, our aim was to support innovative solutions that address existing medical gaps with our capital, knowledge and broader resources and relationships. The ultimate goal is clear: fostering therapeutic advancements that positively impact global health and contribute to a healthier future for all.”, says David.

To steer the ship towards success, he wanted to find someone who had a rare combination of expertise in finance and investments, experience in biotech and pharma operations, and the firm determination to improve patients’ lives. That’s how he met Pierre Beauparlant. With over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry, Pierre brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the organization. After many years in biotech and pharma operations, developing new therapeutic products, and bringing them to the clinic, I transitioned into the world of Venture Capital in 2016. As a former entrepreneur myself, my experience with the ups and downs of building and financing early-stage companies uniquely positions me provide strategic direction to FHCV. More than anything, it was David’s unique profile and visionary ambition that drove me to accept the challenge.”

What is Finchley Healthcare Ventures Excited About?

At Finchley Healthcare Ventures, we firmly believe that breakthrough technologies and transformative ideas have the potential to address significant unmet medical needs and improve patient care. The most recent investment we have made in Capstan Therapeutics is a testament to that philosophy. Indeed, last month, we were very pleased to participate in the financing of Capstan Therapeutics’ Series B. Aligned with our mission, Capstans’ in vivo RNA delivery technology has the potential to revolutionize healthcare by providing a much-needed alternative to complex and risky ex vivo CAR‑T cell therapy. This company is poised to succeed being backed by a remarkable investment syndicate including healthcare venture capital leaders such as Forbion, Sofinnova Investments, Johnson & Johnson Innovation JJDC, Mubadala Capital, Perceptive Advisors, Alexandria Venture Investments, Bristol Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly and Company, Leaps by Bayer, Novartis Venture Fund, OrbiMed, Pfizer Ventures, Polaris Partners, and Vida Ventures. 

While our initial strategy focused on investing in life science Venture Capital funds in Canada and abroad, such as Sofinnova Investments, Omega Funds, Amplitude Ventures, CTI Life Sciences, and New Rhein Healthcare, we are now focusing more and more on direct investments. In the face of groundbreaking progress in life sciences, encompassing novel approaches such as siRNA, nanoparticles, or next-generation biologics, we are eager to work with entrepreneurs and scientists who will leverage these technologies to enhance healthcare, ultimately enhancing patient outcomes and well-being.