Helix Raises $200 Million and Expands Executive Team
Genomics start-up Helix has raised $200M in their Series B funding round, the company announced yesterday. The San Francisco-based company has also announced that they will be expanding their executive team with a new Chief Financial Officer, Chief Marketing Officer, and Chief Performance Officer, as well acquiring Denver-based HumanCode.
Helix was spun out of Illumina in 2017 with the intention of creating the first online store for DNA-based products. These products include ancestry reports, personalised fitness and exercise regimens, and even clothing based on the customer’s DNA sequence. To achieve this goal, the company is responsible for sample collection, sequencing, and data protection once the sequencing is complete.
Now, the company’s Series B funding round, which began in March, has come to a close, totalling $200M. Among the existing investors were Illumina, the Mayo Clinic, Sutter Hill Ventures, Warburg Pincus, and Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers. The round also brought new investors to the table, most notably Temasek Holdings, which is based in Singapore.
“Temasek was the perfect partner for us to continue our growth into the rapidly expanding consumer genomics market both here in the United States and as we look to expand internationally in the coming years,” said Robin Thurston, CEO of Helix. “Their focus on investing in companies that truly want to change the world was perfectly aligned with our mission at Helix. This investment further advances our goal to continue to bring accurate health products to the market with partners like Mayo Clinic.”
In a second announcement, which was also made yesterday, the company revealed that they would be expanding their executive team to incorporate three new roles: Ajay Gopal will be taking on the role of CFO, Deena Bahri has started as the CMO, and Chris Glode will act as the CPO. In the same statement, Helix announced that they would be opening a new office in Denver, Colorado, in conjunction with their acquisition of HumanCode, which is based in the same city. The entirety of the HumanCode team will be brought into the Helix team.
“The Helix platform, powered by our CLIA- and CAP-accredited clinical sequencing lab and proprietary Exome+ assay, offers the most compelling development environment for partners to build the next generation of personal genomics products,” said Thurston. “Helix offers 100 times more data than genotyping arrays, giving developers an unprecedented opportunity to engage people in their health and wellness. With Deena Bahri at the helm of a growing marketing organization, and Ajay Gopal driving the financial health of the business, I am more confident than ever that our platform will continue to build momentum. We are gaining valuable talent in priority, high-demand areas like engineering and product design and are getting the benefit of an integrated team that has deep experience working together to build engaging consumer experiences in digital health. The entire HumanCode team have done a tremendous job creating engaging DNA-powered products for the Helix platform. We are very excited for what this means for Helix and for our partners.”