Sequoia Capital Leads $250 Million Financing for 23andMe


MOUNTAIN VIEW – 23andMe, Inc., the consumer genetics and research company founded by Anne Wojcicki — ex-wife of Google founder Sergey Brin — has raised $250 million in growth financing led by new investor Sequoia Capital.

“23andMe is primed for growth with the only FDA authorizations for direct-to-consumer genetic tests, and a world-class research platform powered by engaged customers,” said Roelof Botha, partner, Sequoia Capital. “The scale of the data – millions of customers and growing – and the unique combination of genotypic and phenotypic information provides an unrivaled research platform for insights into human health. With its distinctive and compelling consumer value proposition, 23andMe is poised to cement its leadership position in the consumer genetics market.”

23andMe offers consumers genetic testing from DNA samples priced at $99 for ancestry testing and $199 for health and ancestry testing.

Sequoia is joined in the round of financing by new investors Euclidean Capital, Altimeter Capital and the Wallenberg Foundation. Current investors joining the round include Fidelity Management & Research Company, lead investor for 23andMe’s prior financing round, and Casdin Capital.

The financing brings the total capital raised by 23andMe to $491 million. It was founded in 2006 by Anne Wojcicki, Linda Avey and Paul Cusenza.

Sequoia’s Botha will join the 23andMe Board of Directors, along with Neal Mohan, Chief Product Officer for YouTube and a Senior Vice President at Google, who joined the board in July. The financing will enable 23andMe to accelerate customer growth, continue funding its expanding therapeutics group, and invest in its crowdsourced genetic research platform, already the world’s largest interactive database for genetic research.

“We have only begun to scratch the surface in direct-to-consumer genetics,” said Anne Wojcicki, 23andMe CEO and co-founder. “We will continue to blaze the trail for our customers and lead the industry we’ve built.”

The company said it has achieved significant product and research milestones this year:

  • Received the first and only FDA-authorization for over-the-counter genetic health risk reports; the only genetic health tests which do not require prescription
  • Surpassed more than 80 peer-reviewed, published genetic studies on disease and wellness, including studies on genetic associations for melanoma, schizophrenia, cognitive empathy, and endometriosis, among others.
  • Nearing 1 billion phenotypic data points paired with its broad genetic panel, enabling rapid discovery and study recruitment: more than 5,000 participants recruited in one week for a genetic study on fertility; launched largest study of its kind on major depressive and bipolar disorder, and first experiential study on pain tolerance and treatment

The investment banking firm Allen & Company LLC served as advisor to 23andMe on the financing.

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