A startup from the founder of Groupon that wants to personalise cancer treatment just raised $110 million at a $2 billion valuation

Drew Angerer/Getty ImagesEric Lefkofsky, chief executive officer of biotechnology company Tempus, arrives for a morning session of the annual Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference, July 11, 2018 in Sun Valley, Idaho.
  • Tempus, a technology company started by Groupon founder Eric Lefkofsky, just raised $US110 million at a $US2 billion valuation.
  • The three-year-old Chicago-based company pulls together data on cancer patients on its platform, including genetic data from tumours and clinical data about how a patient is responding to treatment.
  • The company plans to use the funding to expand its platform into other therapeutic areas.

A startup that aims to make treating diseases more personalised just raised another $US110 million.

Tempus, which was started by Groupon founder Eric Lefkofsky, aims to use data to find better cancer treatments for patients, using both clinical data – information about which medications patients have taken and how they responded to them – and genetic data from the tumours of cancer patients.

The company announced on Wednesday that it has raised $US110 million at a $US2 billion valuation, bringing its total funding to $US320 million. In 2018 alone, the company has raised $US190 million.

The funding came from investors including Baillie Gifford, T. Rowe Price, Revolution Growth, New Enterprise Associates, and previous investors in the company.

Chicago-based Tempus got its start in 2015, and in the last three years has rocketed into unicorn territory. The startup runs a lab that’s able to sequence tumour genetics – as well as the genes they’re born with – to see what mutations could be impacting an individual’s cancer. At the same time, Tempus sorts through clinical data from doctors, hospitals, and studies to standardize the information and analyse for patterns.

It’s similar to the work of two other prominent companies that were both recently acquired by pharma giant Roche: Flatiron Health, which focuses on collecting clinical data about cancer, and Foundation Medicine, which is centered around cancer genetics.

Tempus said in a press release that the new funding would be used to expand its technology into new treatment areas beyond cancer, as well as to grow geographically. Tempus said its platform currently reaches one of every four cancer patients in the US.

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