Perth-based startup fund Purpose Ventures has maintained its local focus, with its first $3 million fully invested in WA companies, the latest being pharmacogenomics company Gene S.
The size of the deal was not disclosed by the Steinberg Family Office-backed early-stage venture capital fund, which has raised $45 million to date through its limited partnership structure.
Co-founded by molecular biologists Svetlana Baltic and Suzanna Lindsey-Temple, Gene S’s technology aims to utilise precision medicine to ensure patients receive the right drug at the right dose, first time, using innovative genetic testing and analytics.
Gene S is the second female-founded company that Purpose has invested in, following an investment into alternative education provider Innovation Design Entrepreneurship Academy, known as IDEA, last month.
The fund, run by Derek and Kylie Gerrard, had committed almost $3 million to its first four investments, including PlanCare, a technology platform that enables self-managed healthcare-at-home services, and Paperly, a parent accessible platform that helps schools reduce the administration load on their teachers and staff.
Purpose said it had a minimum 15 per cent allocation for medical and health-related investments, although half its investments to date have been into medtech and healthtech companies where deal flow had been strong
“Gene S is the first pre-revenue company that we have invested into, but we are looking forward to working with Svetlana and Suzanna as they progress towards commercialisation in the year ahead,” she said.
Gene S was a resident startup at the Charlie Bass-founded Centre for Entrepreneurial Research and Innovation. Mr Bass was recently named 2024 WA Senior Australian of the Year.
NSW-based Dr Lindsey-Temple has been Gene S’s chief medical officer since she co-founded the business. She is also a adjunct senior lecturer at UWA.