Total investment over three years tops nearly $5 million
MEMPHIS, Tennessee, September 22, 2014 – After 90 days of intensive entrepreneurial programming, mentorship, an initial $50,000 investment, and a pitch to an audience of potential investors, two companies participating in the summer 2014 ZeroTo510 accelerator in Memphis have been selected to continue to the second phase of the program and receive additional funding in the amount of $100,000 each.
The program is operated by Memphis Bioworks, and both seed and follow-on funding is provided by co-investors Innova, a pre-seed, seed and early-stage investor focused on starting and funding high-growth companies in the healthcare, bioscience, technology and ag innovation fields across the Mid-South, and MB Venture Partners, a Memphis-based venture capital firm that provides equity capital and strategic direction to life sciences start-ups.
The two companies selected for additional accelerator funding are:
- Compression Kinetics, which created a mobile, single-unit compression device that uses shape memory alloy fabric to deliver compression to patients’ legs, helping to prevent Deep Vein Thrombosis. (www.compkin.com)
- EndoInSight, which has developed a novel device that uses single-use technology to provide medical centers with a simple, cost-effective way to adopt the use of CO2 in procedures such as colonoscopies. (www.endoinsight.com)
“Over the past three years, the support of Launch Tennessee, our investors, and the mentors and medical device experts here in Memphis have helped us take a large step forward in our leadership position in medical device commercialization,” said Allan Daisley, director of entrepreneurship and sustainability for Memphis Bioworks and program director for ZeroTo510. “The two companies selected for a second phase of funding this year each have the potential to bring to market a tool that can save lives and eliminate discomfort for millions of people. That is the kind of innovation and impact everyone involved with this program envisions and steps up to support.”
In total, ZeroTo510 has accelerated the creation of 16 new companies, more than 30 local jobs, and nearly $5 million in investments. Three companies that have graduated from the program are now selling products in the marketplace, and the remaining companies are in the product development stage and/or raising additional funds. Among these companies’ successes: three are generating revenue, two are supplying products to local hospitals, and one recently closed several deals with local hospitals as well as a deal with a major academic hospital in North Carolina. Several of the companies from the 2012 and 2013 cohorts continue to build their businesses in Tennessee.
“The ZeroTo510 participants continue to set a high bar for emerging medical device and health-care technologies, and every participant that comes through the program has access to our assistance and contacts to move forward,” said Jan Bouten, partner at Innova and ZeroTo510 advisor. “These two companies show particular promise because of the large market need that they have targeted, and the success that they have shown to date in developing the prototypes and working with potential users in the marketplace. We will be working hard to ensure they are getting the assistance they need to grow and reach their next milestone. We’re excited to invest in these companies alongside MB Venture Partners and to provide the resources that they need to grow and hire employees here in Tennessee.”
“As investors, we look for long-term potential and the ability of an idea to move forward and ultimately become a respected and established product or service in the medical industry,” said Gary Stevenson, partner, MB Venture Partners. “Each year we see entrepreneurs with ideas that have that potential. This year, we have selected two that stand out and that we think that, with the proper support, contacts and nurturing, will be long-term companies and employers that make an impact.”
ZeroTo510 is a unique, entrepreneurial accelerator program that focuses on leveraging the regional strength of the Memphis area in medical device research and manufacturing. The goal of ZeroTo510 is to help medical device entrepreneurs navigate the start-up process, refine business models and achieve the Food and Drug Administration’s 510(k) pre-market notification filing. Through a competitive application process, four companies were selected to matriculate through an intensive, mentor-driven, 12-week program of instruction and hands-on activities designed to guide the entrepreneur through the process. As the first-ever medical device accelerator, ZeroTo510 is now recognized as a benchmark model for subsequent medical device accelerators, including one in Australia.
The program is operated by Memphis Bioworks Foundation, the region’s go-to organization for creating companies, jobs and investments in bioscience, and Innova. ZeroTo510 is an initiative of the Greater Memphis Regional Accelerator, a program funded by Launch Tennessee and the State of Tennessee as part of Governor Haslam’s INCITE initiative. Announced in May 2012, the INCITE program is designed to support innovation across the state and drive growth in the creation of knowledge-based jobs. INCITE is named for its focus on innovation, commercialization, investment, technology and entrepreneurship.
More information on the ZeroTo510 program is available at http://www.zeroto510.com.
This project is funded under an agreement with the State of Tennessee.
About the Memphis Bioworks Foundation
Memphis Bioworks is the Mid-South’s go-to organization for creating companies, jobs and investments in bioscience and sustainability. A visionary community leader, Memphis Bioworks has a well-established record of sparking new levels of economic vitality by investing in entrepreneurs, building state-of-the-art labs and facilities, and training the next generation of workers. Memphis Bioworks was tapped by the Greater Memphis Chamber’s Chairman’s Circle to lead the Entrepreneurship Powered Innovation Center (EPIcenter), an organization that will serve as the single front door and single point of accountability for entrepreneurs in Memphis. For more information, visit www.memphisbioworks.org, Facebook at www.facebook.com/MemphisBioworks or follow @MemphisBioworks on Twitter.
Innova is a pre-seed, seed and early-stage investor focused on starting and funding high-growth companies in the Biosciences, Technology and AgBio fields across the state of Tennessee. Innova was created by the Memphis Bioworks Foundation to help establish Memphis as a national center of excellence in entrepreneurship. Innova provides entrepreneurs with access to incubator facilities, training and mentoring, industry networks and seasoned executives. Innova’s goal is to nurture the growth of high technology and entrepreneurial efforts in the Mid-South that will result in significant job creation, economic growth and competitiveness. To learn more about Innova, visit www.innovamemphis.com.
About MB Venture Partners
MB Venture Partners is a Memphis-based venture capital firm that provides equity capital and strategic direction to life sciences start-ups. The Firm invests in medical device and biotechnology companies at various stages of development and has now funded more than 40 start-ups. The Firm is especially focused on product solutions for musculoskeletal conditions, where we have specific domain expertise and relationships to assist portfolio companies. For more information, visit www.mbventures.com.