Ventures, LLC | The Kenson Ventures Team | Mission
About Kenson Ventures,
Kenson Ventures, LLC ("Kenson Ventures") is a California-based
venture investment limited liability company founded in 1999. It is located
in scenic Palo Alto, a town 25 miles south of San Francisco and in the hub
of Silicon Valley.
Kenson Ventures provides seed money/funds and strategic advice to
start-ups, partnerships, and established companies focusing in the
biotechnology and life science areas. Kenson Ventures also considers and
participates in co-investment with other institutions. The range of
investment varies from $500,000 to $3 million U.S. dollars. Since Kenson
funds are often accompanied by co-investments from affiliated institutions,
the actual amount of investment could be much greater than that provided by
us. Majority of the investment are made in private companies in the United
States. A Kenson Ventures representative normally serves on the board
(member of the Board or Business Advisory Board) in which it has a vested
We, at Kenson Ventures, understand the challenges of building a
successful company. Our team is dedicated in assisting companies with
strong growth potential. Our strength is in our knowledge base and industry
experiences in building biotechnology companies in the past. When we make
an investment, we do our best to provide growth strategy, resources and the
contact network to assure success of the company.
Kenson Ventures consistently strives to make fruitful investment work.
Our primary focus is on emerging-growth companies. We may also make
investments in late-stage companies. In the short time since Kenson
Ventures' inception, we have been involved in and financed over 20 rapidly
growing companies representing a broad spectrum of technology platforms.
The engagement of these companies ranges from the development of novel
drugs, discovery of genomics-based drug targets and leads, to the
development of research tools in molecular and cellular biology. For a
listing of our previous and current investments, please visit our Portfolio
The Kenson Ventures Team
Kenneth Fong, Ph.D., is the Chairman of
Kenson Ventures, LLC. Kenson specializes in venture financing and strategic
consulting to biotech companies. As of January 2003, Kenson has 18
investments that mostly fall into 3 major categories: a) Innovative
Research Tools, b) Platform Technologies, and c) Drug Development. Prior to
founding Kenson, Dr. Fong is the founder and former CEO of CLONTECH
Laboratories, that was acquired by Becton Dickinson (BD) in late 1999.
CLONTECH is the leader in the Molecular/Cell Biology market and in the last
4 years before its acquisition, the company had experienced an average
growth rate of 36% a year. The company also had 48 consecutive quarters of
double-digit growth and profits. In 1994, 1995, 1998, and 1999, CLONTECH
was selected as one of the fastest-growing companies in the San Francisco
Bay Area. Dr. Fong's past experience is best suited to young companies and
those desire to grow more rapidly. He is also adept at crafting development
strategy and realistic implementation plan to promote the long-term growth
of company. Dr. Fong obtained his Ph.D. from Indiana University.
Joseph C.-C. Huang, Ph.D., is a Vice
President at Kenson Ventures, LLC. Dr. Huang has extensive knowledge and
experience in the biotech industry. He is an expert in the screening and
selecting portfolio companies for investment. Before Kenson, Dr. Huang was
the Head of Molecular Biomedical Research Department at CLONTECH
Laboratories, Inc. (1995-1999). He was responsible for setting up a new
department and managing multi-million dollar therapeutic target discovery
contract research programs for several major pharmaceutical companies.
Prior to CLONTECH, he was a senior scientist and project leader at
Genelabs, Inc. (1986-1995). He was involved in molecular cloning of novel
hepatitis viruses as well as in developing diagnostic tests for detecting
hepatitis viruses. Dr. Huang also participated in developing new tools for
use in screening small molecule drugs. Before Genelabs, he was a
postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Bishop, a Nobel
Laureate, at University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Huang received
his Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of California, Berkeley.
Yishan (Peter) Li, Ph.D., M.B.A., is a
Vice President at Kenson Ventures, LLC. Dr. Li has extensive business and
scientific experience. At his current position, he consulted for biotech
startups on business strategies, operations, marketing and business
development in his capacities as a member of Board of Directors, an
observer to the Board, or a business advisor. He worked in biotechnology
corporate finance at investment bank RBC Capital Markets while he was in
business school. Prior to business school, he was the head of Peptide
Antibody Development at Santa Cruz Biotechnology, Inc. Prior to that, he
was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Molecular and Cell
Biology, University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Li's scientific work
focused on protein expression, small molecule-protein interaction, protein
structure-function relationship, and mechanisms of enzymes. Dr. Li earned
his M.B.A. from University of California, Berkeley. He received his Ph.D.
in biochemistry from Ohio State University, where he was a University
Presidential Fellow, and his B.S. from University of Science and Technology
of China. Peter is on leave at Epitomics, Inc.
Kenson Ventures is focused on building successful companies and creating
values in these companies by providing seasoned and sound strategic advice
in addition to financial assistance.
Our secondary aim is to assist in the
acceleration of basic and drug discovery that promote the development of
new and better therapeutic drugs.