By Nancy Dahlberg
1 Exuma Biotech raises $19 million in funding
Exuma Biotech, formerly known as F1 Oncology, announced it has raised $19 million in Series B financing.
The West Palm Beach-based clinical-stage biotechnology company discovering and developing immunotherapies for solid and liquid tumors, will use the funds to advance its CAR-T therapies for solid tumor malignancies as well as further developing its platform technology in the field of oncology.
The round included investments by MSD Partners, F1 BioVentures, as well as conversion of notes held by individual investors. In conjunction with the funding, Scott Segal, a managing director at MSD Partners, and Frank McCormick, a professor at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, joined the board.
The company has consolidated its subsidiaries under the Exuma brand, said CEO Gregory Frost. "The timing was right for us to create a unified global platform to leverage our synergistic capabilities, which we believe will ultimately allow us to produce and deliver CAR-T products even more efficiently for the millions of people worldwide in need of cutting-edge treatments in their fight against cancer."
Together with this funding round, Exuma has raised about $29 million, according to Crunchbase.
Healthcare technology, including biotech, was the most active sector for venture capital in South Florida in 2019.
2 Endeavor Miami calls for applicants for ScaleUp program
Endeavor Miami has announced a call for applications for Cohort Two of its ScaleUp Program, a four-month acceleration program designed to support startups with high-impact potential in the Miami ecosystem to scale.
The program, a staple of other Endeavor offices around the world, was launched by Endeavor Miami last year to help early-stage businesses prepare for their growth stage while plugging them into the Miami entrepreneurial ecosystem.
“With our Cohort One, we learned that the challenge is bigger than expected – 99% of startups in Miami die before reaching 5 years of operation, even though scaleups, companies at least three years old with a minimum of 20% CAGR, are the ones that generate 80% of the jobs in the market. With this context in mind, the ScaleUp Program is strategically built to take companies from startup to scaleup stage,” Claudia Durán, managing director of Endeavor Miami, said in its blog post announcing the call for applications.
Applications for Cohort Two are open until April 3rd. Endeavor Miami is looking for entrepreneurs leading business from any industry making $1 million to $3 million ARR to apply. The business must have at least two full-time employees, beyond the founders. Female and minority entrepreneurs are highly encouraged to apply.
3 Feeling the impact of coronavirus? State wants to hear from you
Florida’s governor is asking small businesses and startups affected by coronavirus to respond to a survey.
Gov. Ron DeSantis announced the activation of the Business Damage Assessment survey to assess the impact of COVID-19 on Florida’s local business operations. The survey will evaluate businesses affected by COVID-19 and the impacts the virus has had on the local economy so actions to implement appropriate relief programs can begin.
The Business Damage Assessment Survey can be taken online at https://floridadisaster.biz/. Survey results will be shared with state agencies and local partners. Surveys submitted by small businesses can be used to access the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan, made available for COVID-19 through the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act. This week, the U.S. Small Business Administration announced that it will provide small businesses impacted by the novel coronavirus up to $2 million in in disaster assistance loans.
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