Morningside was founded in 1986 to make venture capital and private equity investments. The group is characterized by its long-term outlook in company-building and by its unwavering commitment to acting ethically.
Morningside began investing in America in 1987 and has maintained its office in Boston.
From 1990, Morningside has invested in the UK.
In 1992, Morningside made its first investment in China and set up its office in Shanghai.
Along the way, we made some fine investments in tech and internet companies in China, from the first generation internet companies like Sohu and Ctrip to later companies like Xiaomi and Kuaishou.
We believe the deal process is an intensely personal process, and so is company-building. We are always mindful that we are working with people — people with whom we would like to form long-term friendships.
We form partnerships with the founders and management of portfolio companies to create value together. We work collaboratively and treat everyone with respect.
Cycles are innate to any economy and to the financial markets. Buying assets when they are cyclically out of favor makes for good investments. After the Great Recession of 2008, we started buying apartment buildings in America’s southern states. We restored rental occupancy through sound property management and sold the buildings at low cap rates when the economy recovered.
In venture investing, we are in the business of taking risks.
"Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure...than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat."
— Teddy Roosevelt
Biotech venture capital is not just an asset class in an investment portfolio. We do biotech ventures to make innovative and affordable drugs for patients. If we succeed in so doing, we shouldn’t have to worry about the rest.
Solid and creative science is what drives Morningside’s biotech investments. We don’t mind being the lone sojourner somewhere along the frontier of science.
To date, Morningside portfolio companies have been awarded 7 Breakthrough program statuses, as well as 12 Fast Track program designations by the FDA.
Morningside has been a pioneer in areas such as oncolytic viral therapy, mitochondrial medicine and innate immunity including toll-like receptors, the STING pathway, the complement cascade and immune proteosomes.
As pharmaceutical companies invest in expensive therapies often for diseases of very low incidence, Morningside does not shy away from developing affordable solutions for high-prevalence diseases such as tuberculosis, hepatitis B, asthma, autism and dementia.
Long before COVID-19, Morningside has been investing in vaccines, the one medical intervention that has saved more lives in human history than any therapeutic has.
We always welcome fresh ideas regardless from whom they come. In 2016, two fresh university graduates proposed combining two known drugs to treat ALS. We backed their company Amylyx and the results of their clinical trial were published in NEJM. Patients lived longer and suffered less decline in neurological functions. Backing young scientists and entrepreneurs is our inter-generational commitment.
We look beyond the biotech hubs like Boston and the Bay Area. In 2011, a company from Kentucky just had its lead asset returned by a pharma licensee for safety reasons. Morningside backed the relaunch of the company with an improved product and Apellis is now a $5 billion dollar Nasdaq listed company.
In 2006, Morningside invested in a UK company named CellCentric. Its business model failed and investors abandoned ship. Morningside singlehandedly supported the company to pivot into a new development program. The company now has a promising oncology drug about to complete a phase 2 clinical trial.
Sometimes we goofed, or were stupid, and we have no illusion that it won’t happen again...and again.
Doing good and doing well do go hand in hand.