British medtech Oxford Endovascular secures £7.2M to treat brain aneurysms

Oxford Endovascular

Oxford Endovascular is a spin-out from Oxford University, working to prevent brain haemorrhage by curing brain aneurysms, a condition that affects 1 in 50 persons.

Raises £7.2M

The medtech company has now secured $10 million (approx £7.2 million) in a Series A funding round led by Vulpes Investment Management. 

Existing investors including, Oxford Sciences Innovation PLC, Parkwalk Advisors, Perivoli Innovations, Oxford Investment Consultants, the University of Oxford, and private individuals, also participated. 

The funding will be used to complete development work and gain first-in-human data through an early feasibility clinical study.

The funding raising follows on from previous non-dilutive grant funding won, including €3 million (approx £2.5 million) from the European Union’s prestigious Horizon 2020 SME Instrument and £350k from Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency Smart Grant program.

Utilises ‘Origami’ engineering

According to the company, brain aneurysms are surprisingly common, affecting 1 in 50 people. If a patent has a rupture, they have a high chance of dying or suffering permanent brain damage. 

The Oxford spin-out has developed a micro stent called OxiFlow, utilising ‘Origami’ engineering, which can be inserted into the brain blood vessels via minimally invasive groin access. 

This novel, next-generation ‘flow-diverter’ can be placed more accurately and safely than existing treatments, reducing the risk of complications and having to use multiple devices, claims the company. 

During the COVID-19 crisis in 2020, the company was also one of only 7 startups across Europe & Israel that won funding in return for options, to the tune of €500K (approx £431K).

Mike Karim, CEO of Oxford Endovascular, said: “The current device market for brain aneurysms is valued at well over $1bn and is growing rapidly year-on-year. One of the biggest challenges when it comes to treating neurovascular disease is having devices with high efficacy whilst minimising adverse events. Studies show that often multiple attempts are made to place treatment devices, as they often have challenges of landing accurately, opening, and maintaining position. This can lead to adverse events and multiple devices being used. Procedures typically cost over $50,000 to treat a brain aneurysm and a next-generation flow diverter overcoming unmet needs, offers the chance for more effective, safer, and cost-effective treatments as well as allowing many more patients to benefit. We plan to use this funding to bring Oxford Endovascular’s ground-breaking technology to the next stage and gain clinical data from human studies.”

Martin Diggle, Portfolio Manager, Life Sciences at Vulpes Investment Management, who led the round, commented: “The life sciences team at Vulpes are excited to be participating in the next stage of the development of Oxford `Endovascular’s innovative technology. We believe this platform has the potential to become a world leader in its field.”

Alun Williams, Investment Director at Parkwalk Advisors, the leading investor in UK university spinouts, said: “Parkwalk are delighted to have invested in Oxford Endovascular. This raise is testament to the extraordinary work and innovation of a great team of development engineers and inventors and will help the company through its next stages of research.”

Nick Dixon-Clegg, Investment Principal at Oxford Sciences Innovation, said: “Oxford Sciences Innovation has invested in Oxford Endovascular since seed stage, and we are pleased to continue to do so whilst welcoming new investors Vulpes and Additio into the syndicate, allowing the life-changing OxiFlow™ device to be progressed towards the clinic.”