BGI's gene sequencer spinoff, MGI Tech, has secured $200m in funding from Goldstone Investment, Green Pine Capital and Orient Securities despite a reported $1bn target.

MGI Tech, a gene sequencing technology subsidiary of China-based genomics services provider BGI, raised $200m in funding yesterday.

The cash was supplied by Goldstone Investment, a fund managed by investment banking firm Citic Securities, as well as venture capital firm Green Pine Capital Partners and Orient Securities Capital Investment, a subsidiary of investment bank Orient Securities.

Founded in 2016, MGI develops gene sequencing systems for use in life sciences research and drug development. Its products cover genetic testing, gene editing and synthesis, and include sequencing reagents, materials and biochemical reaction systems.

The spinoff had initially targeted a $1bn round that would have valued it at $5bn, private fund sources told Caixin Global in July 2018, but it cut the round’s size due to comparatively slow sales, another source said.

MGI has sold more than 1,100 of its sequencers but its customers have reportedly largely been drawn from companies that have received investment from BGI under terms that include them buying equipment from BGI-affiliated sellers.

The company said in a statement on WeChat announcing the round that it will use the funding for international growth and research and development, as it seeks to introduce its next generation of sequencing systems.

Image courtesy of MGI Tech Co., Ltd.