Viscgo, a medical device company based in Manchester Science Park, has completed a £315,000 investment round, thanks to a £50,000 investment from early-stage investor, GC Angels.
This comes following investment from a predominantly North West cohort of institutional and private investors including the GM&C Life Sciences Fund, managed by Catapult Ventures, and Deepbridge Capital.
Founded by renowned speech and language therapist, Dr Elizabeth Boaden, and new product development and engineering specialist, Steven Bookbinder, Viscgo’s products improve the management of dysphagia or swallowing difficulties, for patients, carers, clinicians and dysphagia practitioners.
One key problem for people with dysphagia is ensuring that drinks are thickened to the right consistency to ensure safe swallowing.
Viscgo’s leading product, a set of Drink Thickness Test Sticks, provide an easy way of measuring this. The sticks allow dysphagia patients, and those caring for them, to ensure that the drinks are of an appropriate consistency by standing up or falling down based on thickness.
Viscgo has its sights set on working with healthcare providers across the UK and abroad and is currently working with Health Innovation Manchester, an Academic Health Science Network, for a proof of concept.
Support to Viscgo is delivered as part of the ERDF-funded Research and Innovation Health Accelerator in Greater Manchester.
With the investment round, Viscgo is seeking to establish its reach, enabling it to support a growing clientele of dysphagia patients and carers.
As well as investing in research and development, the funding round has been used to recruit business development and marketing managers, growing the team to eight.
Steven Bookbinder said: “This phase of investment has come at a pivotal time as we launch our Drink Thickness Test Sticks and take on new members of the team.
“Viscgo was founded specifically to address the unmet need to ensure an easy way for people with dysphagia to accurately measure drink thickness and improve quality of life. Thanks to the investment from Deepbridge, Catapult Ventures, and now GC Angels, we are able to expand our vision and work to have a real impact on the lives of those living with dysphagia.”
Jess Jackson, head of investment at GC Angels, said: “Companies like Viscgo, who have identified a problem and come up with a truly innovative solution, are exactly the type that we want to work with at GC Angels.
“We’re pleased that we were able to finish off this significant investment round, and are looking forward to seeing the outcomes of the team’s work to expand its reach both in Manchester and beyond.”
Daniel Zamora, commercial programme manager at Health Innovation Manchester said: “The Research and Innovation Health Accelerator supports companies such as Viscgo to collaborate with Greater Manchester’s research and innovation institutions to support the development and acceleration of innovative health and care products.
“We are excited to be working with Viscgo and supporting their acceleration by providing access to specialist insights and validating the clinical need for their innovation.”