updated 01:24 pm EDT, Wed October 9, 2013
Bill Maris credited with spearheading project
Google is reportedly planning to invest hundreds of millions into its Calico health startup. The company has yet to publicly disclose its monetary commitment, however fresh details have emerged in a Forbes report. Although ex-Genentech CEO Art Levinson has already been confirmed as the top executive in Calico, unnamed sources suggest the endeavor is actually the brainchild of Google Ventures managing partner Bill Maris.
Maris is said to have pitched the idea to a wide range of tech executives and venture capitalists before talking to Google co-founder Sergey Brin. As the talks between Maris, Brin and Google CEO Larry Page continued to develop, the trio reportedly decided that the startup should be funded entirely by Google.
Calico has been promoted as the key to finding a new way to approach healthcare, attempting to discover and address the underlying causes of aging. In contrast to research into cellular genetic degradation, most biotech companies are said to focus on treating or preventing specific diseases.
The startup is expected to have much more flexibility than a traditional pharmaceutical company, working more as a long-term research institute rather than attempting to get a product into clinical trials as soon as possible.
Google's quarterly earnings report, set to arrive next week, could shed more light on the company's investment.