The acquisition of Tonkon Torp client TomegaVax by San Francisco-based Vir Bio marks a significant boon for Oregon’s growing role in the bioscience industry. TomegaVax attracted favorable attention from the VC community for its work in developing vaccine therapies and preventions for major infectious diseases including AIDS, malaria, hepatitis, and tuberculosis.
The firm helped form TomegaVax when it spun out of the OHSU research facilities and set up facilities at the Oregon Bioscience Incubator in Portland. Drawing upon their deep bench in corporate finance and M&A, as well as their expertise representing bioscience companies, the firm positioned TomegaVax as a growth oriented company with a well-defined exit strategy.
Attorneys David Forman and Drea Schmidt represented TomegaVax in its acquisition by Vir Bio, which counts ARCH Venture Partners and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation among its investor group. As a testament to Oregon’s growing prominence in the bioscience industry, Vir Bio will keep the R&D arm at the Oregon Business Incubator, which has doubled in staff since the acquisition.
Tonkon Torp’s expertise and familiarity in representing bioscience companies includes the planning and organization of the nonprofit OTRADI in 2007, and its development of the Oregon Bioscience Incubator in 2013. The firm also provides government relation services to the Oregon Bioscience Association.