Gimv, VIB and University of Antwerp invest EUR 2.0 million in molecular diagnostics startup Multiplicom
Gimv, Gimv managed Biotechfonds Vlaanderen, VIB and University of Antwerp (UA) together invest EUR 2.0 million in a Series-A funding round of Multiplicom, a Belgian startup focused on molecular diagnostics. Gimv and Gimv managed funds invest EUR 1.5 million. VIB and UA together invest the balance of EUR 0.5 million. Multiplicom (www.multiplicom.com) is a spin out of the Jurgen Del-Favero lab of the VIB Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Antwerp (UA), directed by Christine Van Broeckhoven, where its core Multiplexer™ technology was developed. The proceeds of the financing will be used for the development of innovative diagnostic tests, CE-marking of diagnostic assays, and to build a sales network in the European Union. Multiplicom is specialized in the development, manufacturing and commercialization of innovative molecular genetic tests. These tests allow (i) to determine whether an individual has an increased genetic risk to develop a disease, (ii) early detection of congenital genetic defect, or (iii) to identify the most appropriate therapy for patients. Multiplicom’s assays offer a significant overall reduction in cost and time for next generation sequencing based genetic analysis. Multiplicom already offers several diagnostic assays, including assays for breast cancer and cystic fibrosis. The company’s initial focus will be on direct sales in Western European countries in combination with newly to be appointed distributors in other countries. Moreover, Multiplicom is already using its Multiplexer™ technology in collaboration with pharma companies to identify genetic markers linked to drug safety and/or efficacy. Dirk Pollet, Multiplicom’s CEO, on this transaction: “VIB and UA have excelled in nurturing the Multiplexer™ technology that is unique in its ability to make highly complex genetic analysis simple to perform, building on the DNA sequencing power of the next generation sequencers that are being introduced in molecular genetic labs. With the support of a reputable investor such as Gimv, it is our objective to develop a broad range of CE-labeled diagnostic assays that will help patients and doctors to better understand the genetic basis of certain diseases and predispositions, such that personalized medicine can become a reality”. Multiplicom is the sixth VIB startup (after Ablynx, Actogenix, Cropdesign, Devgen and Pronota) to receive funding from Gimv.