23andMe and Virgin Group’s VG Acquisition Corp. successfully close business combination
23andMe, a leading consumer genetics and research company, and VG Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company sponsored by Virgin Group, today announced the completion of their previously announced business combination.
The transaction, which was approved on 10 June 2021 by VG Acquisition Corp.’s shareholders, uniquely positions 23andMe to revolutionise personalised healthcare and therapeutic development through human genetics. The combined company is called 23andMe Holding Co. and will be traded on The Nasdaq Global Select Market (“Nasdaq”) beginning on 17 June 2021 under the new ticker symbol “ME” for its Class A Common shares and “MEUSW” for its public warrants.
23andMe raised approximately $592m in gross proceeds to fuel growth and expansion in the company’s consumer health and therapeutics businesses. Capital from the transaction will also be used to invest in its unique genetic and phenotypic database to help accelerate personalised healthcare at scale. 23andMe CEO Anne Wojcicki will continue to lead the combined company with the current management team.
“23andMe was founded to revolutionize healthcare by empowering people with direct access to their DNA,” said Anne Wojcicki, CEO and co-founder of 23andMe. “Over 11 million people have joined 23andMe and are part of the community that is using genetics to transform how we diagnose, treat and prevent human disease. As we enter the next phase as a public company, we have the opportunity to expand our impact by bringing personalized healthcare directly to everyone.”
Richard Branson, Virgin Group founder, added: “As one of the earliest investors in 23andMe, I’ve long believed in its vision to transform the future of healthcare. I’ve seen first-hand the transformative impact 23andMe has in paving the way for many more people to be proactive about their health and wellbeing. There are huge growth opportunities ahead, and with Anne and the rest of the incredible management team at the helm, I’m confident they will continue to innovate and disrupt the industry, creating a lasting impact on many people’s lives. We look forward to continuing our partnership as 23andMe begins life as a public company.”
As part of the business combination Evan Lovell, chief investment officer of Virgin Group and chief financial officer of VG Acquistion Corp., and Peter Taylor, president of ECMC Foundation (a nonprofit dedicated to educational attainment for low-income students) and former chief financial officer for the University of California, will join the 23andMe board of directors. Lovell and Taylor will join existing directors Roelof Botha, Patrick Chung, Richard Scheller, Neal Mohan and Anne Wojcicki on the board.
Go to VG Acquisition Corp.’s website to find out more.