Pharma giant Eli Lilly announced today that it is buying Versanis Bio, a startup developing drugs with applications in obesity treatment, in a transaction valued at up to $1.93 billion.
Lilly did not specify how much of the purchase will be upfront and how much will be contingent on Versanis meeting future milestones tied to clinical progress and sales. Given that Versanis is still an early-stage company, it’s likely most of the payment will be tied to meeting milestones.
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Still, it’s a big number, especially considering that Oakland-based Versanis was only founded in 2021. That year, the company raised its only known venture round, a $70 million Series A led by Atlas Venture and Medicxi.
Notably, Versanis is one of a number of recently funded startups working on treatments for obesity and to promote weight loss. Using Crunchbase data, we curated a list of nine companies that last raised capital in the past year:
Illustration: Dom Guzman
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