Dublin, Ireland, 28th March 2019 – CroíValve, a medtech start-up providing a safe and effective treatment for tricuspid regurgitation, today announces that it has secured €3.2 million in an oversubscribed seed financing round. The round was led by the HBAN (Halo Business Angel Network) MedTech and Irrus Syndicates, alongside Atlantic Bridge University Fund, Enterprise Ireland, SOSV and a group of cardiologists who see the treatment’s transformative potential. The funding will support the continued development of CroíValve’s innovative technology.
CroíValve, a spinout from the Trinity Centre for Bioengineering, has developed a minimally invasive treatment for tricuspid regurgitation (TR). The heart condition occurs when the leaflets or cusps of the tricuspid valve – the valve separating the heart’s right ventricle and right atrium – fail to close properly due to dilation of the right heart, allowing blood to leak backwards into the right atrium. This causes further expansion, and eventually failure, of the right side of the heart. It is a severe cardiac disease with progressive symptoms including fatigue, fluid retention leading to abdominal and ankle swelling, liver and kidney failure, and death.
As the vast majority of patients are elderly and too frail for open-heart surgery, the only option available to them is medication that removes the excess fluid, but does not cure the condition. CroíValve’s innovative technology specifically addresses the challenges associated with tricuspid heart valve disease. The device is delivered through the heart’s blood vessels and seals the gap between the native valve leaflets, therefore restoring the heart’s function and preventing regurgitation. The device is held in place with a unique anchoring system that removes the need for potentially traumatic anchoring into the right heart. The procedure is safe, simple and effective. With over half-a-million new cases annually in the US and EU alone, it is a significant unmet need and market opportunity.
Dr Lucy O’Keeffe, CEO, CroíValve, said: “To date, all treatment options are either too invasive or merely symptom management. CroíValve was established from a desire to bring a new, safe treatment option that can change and save lives.
“We welcome the investors’ support in accelerating our development efforts and look forward to working together to bring this exciting technology to patients. In doing so we are currently building our team, particularly in the area of R&D, and by year-end 2019 we will have grown to a company of 10. As part of this expansion, we are delighted to welcome Dr Ivan Vesely as our CTO, and the extensive knowledge that he brings. Additionally, we have established a great board, with Bernard Collins, one of our investors from the HBAN MedTech syndicate, bringing vast experience as chairman.”
Dr. Martin Quinn, CMO, CroíValve, said: “The CroíValve technology will revolutionise the treatment of patients with severe tricuspid incompetence. It is extremely easy and safe to use and can be implanted without the need for general anaesthesia.”
The funding round was led by 48 angel investors from HBAN, the all-island organisation responsible for the promotion of business angel investment, and an initiative of Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland and Invest Northern Ireland. It is the largest ever number of HBAN members to contribute to one funding round and together they invested €1.5M in the company.
Bernard Collins, CroíValve Chairman and HBAN MedTech Syndicate member, said: “As angel investors, we are not just providing capital to CroíValve, but also knowledge of, and contacts within, the medtech sector. This will help to open doors for CroíValve and enable the company to scale and commercialise its device. As chairman and an investor, I am extremely excited to be involved in this game-changing company dedicated to transforming the way tricuspid regurgitation is treated.”
“On behalf of Atlantic Bridge, I am pleased to welcome Trinity spin-out CroiValve to the University Bridge Fund portfolio and am also delighted to join the Board of the Company. We believe the CroiValve team has developed a truly novel device that represents a disruptive approach to the treatment of tricuspid valve regurgitation and is an excellent example of the commercialisation of ground breaking Irish research ”, said Helen Ryan, Senior Advisor at Atlantic Bridge.
About CroíValve: A spin-out from Trinity College Dublin, CroíValve (croí is Irish for heart) is a privately held company that is developing a percutaneous TR treatment option. Dr Martin Quinn, a consultant cardiologist, developed the original concept when recognising the clear unmet clinical need. This was then developed, with the support of Enterprise Ireland and EIT Health, within Trinity College Dublin when Prof Bruce Murphy, Dr Lucy O’Keeffe and Dr Paul Heneghan joined the team. The company is located in the Liffey Trust Enterprise Centre in Dublin, Ireland. www.croivalve.com; email@example.com
About HBAN: HBAN is a joint initiative of Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland and Invest Northern Ireland, dedicated to the all-island promotion of business angel investment. The HBAN umbrella group supports the early stage entrepreneurial community across the island of Ireland and actively works to increase the number of angel investors investing in early stage companies. The all-island umbrella group works on a regional basis to support the formation of new angel networks and works with existing angel networks to develop their capability and capacity, and across a range of industry sectors. HBAN also acts as a voice to Government, stakeholders, business and the media to promote the interests and needs of the wider angel investment community. HBAN is managed by Dublin BIC in partnership with the regional Irish BICs in Cork, Galway & Waterford and with Clarendon Fund Managers in Northern Ireland. Further information is available at www.hban.org
About Atlantic Bridge: Atlantic Bridge has €750m assets under management and invests in high growth technology companies globally and accelerates the scale up of companies by applying its proprietary Bridge Model into the US and Chinese markets. The Firm has investment teams, offices and extensive networks in Dublin, London, Palo Alto, Muscat and Beijing. Atlantic Bridge’s €60m University Fund is focused on accelerating the commercialisation of ground-breaking research and the scaling of global businesses from Trinity College Dublin (Trinity), University College Dublin (UCD) and all third level research institutions. The Fund was initiated in a joint leadership collaboration between UCD and Trinity in 2015, with further support from European Investment Fund, Enterprise Ireland, Bank of Ireland and AIB. To date it has invested in over 15 companies including Proverum Medical, Neurent Medical and Atlantic Therapeutics.