Clinical data and genomics company Sema4 debuted on the stock market Friday, raising $500 million to “step on the gas” and accelerate the growth of its healthcare intelligence platform.
The Connecticut-based venture of Mount Sinai Health System went public via a SPAC merger at a valuation of around $3 billion. Sema4 announced the planned merger in February after closing a $121 million series C in August 2020.
It began trading on the Nasdaq Global Select Market Friday under the ticker symbols “SMFR” and “SMFRW.”
Spun out of Mount Sinai in 2017, the Sema4 platform uses machine learning and other artificial intelligence tools to analyze a database of more than 10 million patient genomic profiles and clinical records, with the goal of improving physicians’ ability to diagnose, manage and ultimately prevent disease. The company has entered into various partnerships with health systems to build genomics programs, including Evanston and AdventHealth.
Sema4’s healthcare intelligence platform aims at building models capable of predicting the courses of conditions and individual outcomes.
The company intends to use the influx of capital – approximately $500 million in cash proceeds – to support its organic operating needs and capitalize on inorganic opportunities to accelerate growth through the acquisition of complementary businesses. The company also plans to use the funds to increase uptake of Sema4’s health platforms in healthcare systems and investments in integration.
“With the capital raised from this successful transaction, we are well-positioned to help further close the gap between the practice of medicine and the availability of more clinically actionable guidance in order to improve the standard of care,” said Eric Schadt, Ph.D., founder and chief executive officer of Sema4 in a statement.
“We look forward to continuing to develop and scale our innovative health intelligence platform to enable health systems in delivering precision medicine as the standard of care,” he said.
“With the merger now complete, Sema4 can now “really step on the gas and accelerate its powerful business model,” said Eli Casdin, former chief executive officer of CM Life Sciences.
“This is a unique company set to transform healthcare by leveraging genomic and clinical data with artificial intelligence and machine learning to deliver an enhanced understanding of disease and wellness,” he said.
Sema4’s business combines impressive scale, growth and innovation, according to Keith Meister, former chairman of CM Life Sciences.
“The additional capital from this transaction will help Sema4 further advance its relationships and partnerships with health systems and biopharmaceutical entities over the next several years. While there are many companies seeking to harness the potential of big data in healthcare, Sema4 has built a differentiated data ecosystem and platform driving personalized medicine and improved health outcomes,” Meister said in a statement.
This past year, the company inked a handful of new genomics and data analytics partnerships. Janssen teamed up with the Stamford-based company to tap its genomic testing and data analytics platform in an effort to better seek out the best patients for its cancer trials, FierceBioTech reported.
The company also expanded its partnership with the state of Connecticut to provide COVID-19 testing to residents, as well as state employees and first responders.
In 2018, the company partnered with Sanofi on a five-year longitudinal study of nearly 1,200 asthma patients, with plans to incorporate digital tools to develop a better understanding of the disease.
Following the merger, the Sema4 board of directors includes several prominent executives previously unaffiliated with Sema4: Eli Casdin, Emily Leproust, chief executive officer of Twist Bioscience, Jason Ryan, most recently chief operating and financial officer of Magenta Therapeutics and Nat Turner, co-founder of Flatiron Health. They join directors Dennis Charney, Michael Pellini, Joshua Ruch, Dr. Schadt, and Rachel Sherman.
Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC and J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as financial advisors to Sema4. Jefferies LLC acted as sole financial advisor, lead capital markets advisor, and sole placement agent to CM Life Sciences.