Longevity-focused startups have been on the rise in recent years as we become more focused on our health. It’s not all about apps to get you into the gym, though. Longevity startups can range from biotech-oriented disease prevention to organ regeneration. The Aging Analytics Agency estimates that global investment in longevity startups will exceed $40 billion by 2021, and the market could grow to $600 billion by 2025, according to Bank of America.
Now investors like Apollo Health are raising large sums, such as their $180 million fund in November, while Swiss longevity company builder Maximon raised a €96 million fund, to name just two in Europe.
Now coming from the US is a new fund to join the fray.
Based in New York Life Extending Businesses is a new $100 million fund that says it will focus on “longevity for people and planet.” In practice, that means supporting founders who accelerate the science of longevity.
That includes areas such as people, animals, agriculture, food, energy and transportation, as well as AI, direct-to-consumer, Web3, infrastructure-as-a-service, platforms and marketplaces.
Fortunately, the fund’s founders know what they’re talking about, as the team has multiple science PhDs, successful startups, and Angel investments under their belts.
Life Extension’s LPs include founders and investors of other VCs, unicorn founders, and major institutions.
Co-founder dr. Amol Sarvac studied cognitive science at Stanford and Columbia, and taught entrepreneurship at Columbia. He has also given WeWork a run for its money with flexible office unicorn Knotel, and also started Peek (acquired by SoftBank.)
The pair has previously invested in startups such as Galatea Bio, a DNA database for genomic discovery; DeepCell, the computer vision company that uses AI to create a database of cell morphology, has raised $100 million; and Particle Health, which raised $40mm.
During a phone call, Sarva told me, “There was a clean Tech 1.0, a clean Tech 2.0, and something similar is happening in the Biotech universe now. Software has now come to intersect science in a new and different way and it makes it more likely to be technology.”
Berenguer added: “We are going to focus on the software and data-driven companies in this category. Most of the entrepreneurs we are going to support are not the typical biologist in a lab doing experiments. They are going to simulate experiments, they are going to analyze that data. For example, they will commercialize using APIs within marketplaces. So it is very similar to what happened to the internet 20 years ago.”
Sarva continued: “The future of humanity certainly depends on what we do for people, but also for the planet we live on. It is and it is the same. It’s the same technologies and science. That has an impact. It’s biology and chemistry. It has an impact on people in the fields of agriculture, food and even energy production. This advanced science is really the key to it all. And so we decided, let’s find where science and software intersect. That will have a huge impact.”
The fund is headquartered in New York and also has team members in Madrid, London and San Francisco.