Patras Science Park through the Proof of Concept financing tool, supports innovation and entrepreneurship focusing on the dynamic development of new companies throughout Greece with a view to the global market. In this context, a spin-off company active in the biotechnology sector was created under the name BIOPIX-T on December 2019, which soon received significant distinctions and awards.
BIOPIX-T is the 1st success story of Proof of Concept (PoC) with the company being the first team to stand out at the beginning of the PoC programme (November 2018) receiving a total funding of 50,000 euros.
Confirmation of the value of the PoC financing tool came soon – just two years after its launch- with funding from Metavallon VC! Metavallon announced on September 2020, its seed investment into biotech Spinoff BIOPIX-T. The investment round is joined by strategic angel investors from the healthcare and diagnostics sector.
Giorgos Karantonis, Partner at Metavallon VC, states: “During the evaluation of BIOPIX-T company, in which we recently invested, we realized the substantial contribution of the Patras Science Park (PSP) and more specifically, the Proof of Concept (PoC) program, its funding tool, to accelerate the conversion process of a long-successful research team into a dynamic startup. We believe that the support received from the PSP and the development of the team based on PSP advice, were crucial both for the mind shift from academia to business and for the preparation of a structured business plan that persuaded us as investors to proceed with funding.”
The company was founded by George Papadakis, Electra Gizeli, Alexandros Pantazis, Nikolaos Fikas and Sergios Katsaros in order to commercialize a novel molecular diagnostic device, branded as IRIS, developed for the detection of nucleic acids at the point-of-care.
IRIS introduces a radical improvement in genetic testing allowing for the first time the combination of affordability and portability with the accuracy and sensitivity of standard lab-based molecular diagnostic tools. The company operates out of the Science and Technology Park of Crete (STEP-C) and targets two healthcare-diagnostics related markets through the production of standardized assays for detection and monitoring of Infectious Diseases and Companion Diagnostics.
Moreover, the scientists received recently backing in the form of a €2.4 million EU grant and this new EU funding will give the effort an added push into the market. The EU funding is part of a new package of €128 million aiming to combat COVID-19, and is expected to further support the certification of the IRIS device, as well as enabling a validation study of a panel for SARS-CoV-2 and influenza A.
The company is expanding its team by developing further its marketing activities and accelerating commercialization as well as enlarging the network of trial clients. The team’s vision is to become an innovation leader in the field of molecular diagnostics and grow into an international company with significant global presence.