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Efficiency in Drug Development Process is Arrivo Bioventure’s Signature Mark

by Steve Butts, CEO Arrivo BioVentures | March 2024

Sower Ventures’ strategy of driving equity multiple returns for our investors is based on strong partnerships with experts in niche areas of the venture capital landscape. One of those strong partnerships has been with Solas BioVentures, based in Chattanooga, TN. Over the last year, Sower has committed nearly $15M of investment capital (through our Sower-Solas I, LP Offering) to the Solas Emerging Healthcare Fund, which now stands with committed capital of approximately $50M in total. We’re nearing the final commitment closing of May 31st, 2024, so you have likely seen some communication from Sower on this fund.

This is the third fund offering from Solas since its inception and likely will prove to be the best yet. It aims to take advantage of the current depressed valuations in this space paired with high demand from strategic buyers. The below overview is provided by Steve Butts, CEO of Arrivo BioVentures. Arrivo is a significant investment held by the fund, and we’re a big fan of Steve, his team, and the work being done at Arrivo on behalf of patients and investors.


Arrivo BioVentures LLC was founded in 2016 in the Research Triangle Park area of North Carolina, with the mission to work with investors, innovators and pharmaceutical companies to identify and develop novel medicines that offer benefits to patients, caregivers and physicians.  The company was co-founded by CEO Steve Butts, CCO Dr. Michael Ackermann and Bill Wofford.  They brought with them to Arrivo a drug development team that, on average, has over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and a history of successful exits from start-up companies.

“My Arrivo story started a decade ago, when I was introduced to Dr. David Adair of Solas BioVentures,” Steve explains. “I was then at start-up, Addrenex Pharmaceuticals, when Dr. Adair and his associates became interested in our concept and expertise, and ultimately a new venture was formed.” From Addrenex, which was sold to Shionogi Pharma, along with other successful exits including Neuronex and Aerial BioPharma, their relationship strengthened.  Fast-forward to today, Dr. Adair, through his venture capital firm Solas BioVentures, is a major investor and board member of Arrivo BioVentures.

“Arrivo’s strength is in identifying promising early-stage drug candidates and moving them efficiently through the drug development process, demonstrating that the drugs are safe and efficacious in Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical trials,” says Butts.  Historically this has been a successful business model for management, as it offers the best return to investment profile in the drug development process.  Once proof-of-concept has been validated, management will find a larger pharmaceutical company to acquire the asset, complete the Phase 3 development, and commercialize, which typically requires hundreds of millions of dollars of pre-revenue investment.

Arrivo recently completed a Series B investment round of $45.25M bringing the total raised by Arrivo to approximately $100M.  “We’ll use the funds to continue the development of SP-624 and RABI-767, two products that have the potential to change the way medicine is practiced,” explains Butts.  SP-624 is a SIRT6 Activator, a novel epigenetic mechanism of action, currently in a large Phase 2b clinical trial for patients with Major Depressive Disorder.  Arrivo is also exploring SP-624’s potential to treat other diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Diabetes.

RABI-767 is a lipase inhibitor that is in a Phase 2a proof-of-concept study in patients that are predicted to progress to severe acute pancreatitis. There are currently no approved treatments for acute pancreatitis. Patients that progress to severe acute pancreatitis experience long hospital stays and have mortality rates of approximately 20%.

Arrivo expects results from both studies in 2025.

Visit Arrivo BioVentures.