Thursday, June 30, 2022

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Watchmaker Genomics Raises $40M Series A Financing

Watchmaker Genomics, a life sciences company specializing in the development of high-stringency applications focused on the reading, writing, and editing of DNA and RNA, today announced it had secured $40 million in an oversubscribed Series A, bringing total funding to date to $53.5 million. The round was led by Decheng Capital, with co-investment from Eclipse Ventures.

Founded in 2019, Watchmaker Genomics established an enzyme engineering technology platform that leverages recent advances in computational design and directed evolution. The founding team has deep domain expertise in next-generation sequencing (NGS) and clinical oncology assay development and a track record of building successful life science companies, notably Kapa Biosystems, Enzymatics, and ArcherDx.

The company launched its first product in 2020 and has since achieved profitability with 175% year-over-year revenue growth. With this Series A round of financing, Watchmaker plans to accelerate investment in its protein engineering platform to deliver a suite of new products that address the demands of clinical sequencing and support emerging applications in single-cell analysis, epigenetics, and cell-free DNA. In addition, the company will expand commercial channels and manufacturing capacity, making these product solutions more broadly accessible to the life science and genomics communities.

“We are thrilled to partner with Watchmaker Genomics as the company enters its next phase of product innovation and commercialization. The experienced team at Watchmaker has already built a strong foundation, and we look forward to supporting their continued growth,” said Decheng Capital Partner Victor E. Tong, Jr., who is joining the Watchmaker Board of Directors.

“Watchmaker is developing tools and techniques that will unlock the future of genomics, both in the lab and the clinic. We are excited to partner with this world-class team as they pioneer the new frontier of genomics and ultimately, significantly improve how we treat diseases,” said Eclipse Ventures Partner Justin Butler, who will join Watchmaker as a Board Observer.

“The additional financing will enable Watchmaker to more quickly scale our organization to meet the explosive demands of the genomics industry and help to further realize our vision of more personalized medicine and improved human health,” said Trey Foskett, CEO and Co-Founder of Watchmaker Genomics. “Decheng Capital is a leading investor in life science and sequencing, and we are excited to have the firm lead our Series A. Watchmaker, Decheng, and Eclipse share a passion for building market-leading, impactful companies, and we welcome Victor and Justin to join us.”

This news builds on the company’s previously announced collaborations with Twist Biosciences, Element Biosciences, Singular Genomics, and Molecular Loop. Watchmaker will be showcasing its DNA and RNA NGS solutions for clinically relevant sample types and applications at the Advances in Genome Biology and Technology (AGBT) conference from June 6th – 9th in Orlando, FL.

Watchmaker Genomics applies advanced enzymology to enable breakthrough applications for the reading, writing, and editing of DNA and RNA. The company combines domain expertise in protein engineering with large-scale enzyme manufacturing to address the demanding quality, performance, and scale requirements of high-growth clinical genomics applications.

Watchmaker’s product portfolio includes enzymes and kits for next-generation sequencing library preparation, synthetic biology, and molecular diagnostics. Based in Boulder, Colorado, the Watchmaker Genomics team brings decades of collective experience building successful life science companies, commercializing novel technologies, and advancing clinical genomics applications. Watchmaker partners directly with innovative life science companies, commercial sequencing providers, and pioneering research labs.

 

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