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23 November 2012

£410k follow-on investment by The North West Fund for Biomedical

Press Release 23rd November 2012

The North West Fund for Biomedical, managed by SPARK Impact, has awarded more than £400,000 in follow-on investments to two North West biomedical companies.

Kanichi Research Services, which develops ultra-sensitive electrochemical sensors for the point of care healthcare market, has received a further £285,000, while Med ePad, which provides interactive devices and apps to assist patient self-care, has been awarded an additional £125,000.

This latest investment marks the third tranche of funding for both businesses, which received initial Pathfinder investments in 2011 and also benefitted from further development funds earlier this year.

Kanichi Research Services, which has now received total investment of £460,000 from The North West Fund, will use the latest funding to carry out an 18-month technical evaluation of its technology at St Mary's Hospital in Manchester. The business is also relocating to the Biomedical Cluster at Liverpool Science Park as it embarks on plans to develop a handheld device for assessing chemicals in breath.

Total funding for Med ePad now stands at £250,000 and the business, which is also based at Liverpool Science Park, plans to use this new tranche to employ additional staff and expand its project development pipeline.

The North West Fund for Biomedical is a sub-fund of the £155m Evergreen North West Fund that is jointly financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Kanichi CEO, David Killworth said: ''We have developed an excellent relationship with SPARK and we are extremely grateful to receive their continued financial backing and commercial support. They believe in what we are trying to achieve and that is such a boost to our overall ambitions."

Rob Connell, chief technical officer and founder of Med ePad, said: "We have exciting plans for a range of new products and devices that could reap real benefits for the provision of patient care, building on the success we have already had with our existing projects. The ongoing support of SPARK is crucial to the success of those plans."

SPARK Impact has completed 35 separate investments to date with a strong pipeline of further follow-on investments, new larger investments and a broad range of Pathfinder deals.

Dr Penny Attridge, senior investment director at SPARK Impact and manager of The North West Fund for Biomedical, said: "These two companies reflect the strength of biomedical development in the region and, having reviewed their business plans and future projections, we are delighted to continue our relationship.

"The Pathfinder model is clearly working and we will continue to work closely with our investee companies to identify opportunities for further investment as they bid to achieve commercialisation."


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