Sequence Raises $500K from Killick

Sequence Bio, the St. John’s company that analyzes genetic data to improve medical outcomes, raised an additional $500,000 in equity funding from Killick Capital, bringing the total of its seed round to $1 million.The company released the news in a statement Tuesday, days after it announced a major initiative with the Newfoundland and Labrador government to apply genetic research to healthcare in the province.

Founded in 2013, Sequence works with partners to analyze vast sets of data from gene pools to get a deeper understanding of which people are at the greatest risk of contracting a disease. It recently signed an agreement with Memorial University to use the university’s genetic databank to study colon cancer.

Sequence Bio was founded by entrepreneurs Tyler Wish and Chris Gardner to capitalize on Newfoundland’s genetic data. The island has a rare — possibly unique — genetic grouping of families that have lived on the island for generations and who have distinct genetic markers.

Dobbin Looks Ahead After Strong Year

Its latest investor, Killick, is the family investment fund of the Dobbin family of St. John’s and has benefited from two exits in the last two years.

Its Carrollton, Texas-based unit Killick Aerospace sold four of its six divisions earlier this year to Alexandria, Va.-based transport support company VSE Corp. The sale grossed the Newfoundland investment firm about US$229 million.

And last year Killick successfully exited its investment in financial software company Verafin. California private equity company Spectrum Equity invested $60 million in Verafin and bought out several early investors including Killick.

“We invest in companies with the potential for substantial growth, long-term value creation and capital appreciation,” said Killick Founder and President Mark Dobbin in the statement. “Sequence Bio presents such an opportunity combined with the opportunity to positively impact lives and communities in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador through an innovative focus on data, life sciences and precision medicine.”

Dobbin has recently said he was considering new investments, and Killick is his first in Atlantic Canada in several years. He said in an email he has not made any other investments lately.

In June and July, Sequence Bio said it had raised $300,000 from the Venture Newfoundland and Labrador, a new fund backed by the provincial government and BDC Capital, and managed byPelorus Venture Capital. The other $200,000 came from Klister Credit Corp.

Sequence Bio recently completed the Canadian Technology Accelerator program at the Cambridge Innovation Centre in Boston in August. The program provides accelerator space and mentorship to Canadian companies with high potential.