EIT has awarded a share of €5.5m to 11 health-focused start-ups to help alleviate the financial stress that has been caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
On Thursday (9 July), EIT Health announced that it is awarding €5.5m to 11 start-ups as part of the EIT Crisis Response Initiative.
EIT Health, which is a network of health innovators backed by the EU, set up its Start-up Rescue Instrument in May 2020, putting out a call to medtech and digital health start-ups to apply to receive up to €500,000 in co-investment in return for options.
The EU-funded initiative aimed to alleviate some of the financial shock that start-ups have felt in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, while bridging the gap between Series A and Series B funding rounds.
Funding medtech start-ups
EIT Health launched the funding scheme after a report published in April by the European Commission and European Parliament found that venture capital activity is likely to slow significantly during the pandemic.
As VC typically accounts for 30 to 40pc of funds raised by start-ups, EIT Health recognised the detrimental impact that the pandemic could have on start-up cashflow.
Kurt Höller, director of business creation at EIT Health, commented: “In the current climate, many start-ups are experiencing issues in raising funding rounds that are critical to their future. We have extremely promising start-ups here in Europe and we cannot sit by and allow the existence of a generation of emerging companies to be threatened by Covid-19.”
Höller noted that it is not all doom and gloom, as health remains a priority and start-ups with the ability to be agile within the changing environment can discover new opportunities during this crisis.
Among the 11 start-ups selected to receive up to €500,000 in funding is Irish medtech firm, Neurent Medical. The Galway-based start-up has developed a minimally-invasive treatment for rhinitis.
The other 10 start-ups awarded funding were Allcyte, Hemotune AG, HT BioImaging, Ilya Pharma AB, Mowoot, MRIguidance, Orthox Holdings Limited, Oxford Endovascular, Portabiles Healthcare Technologies, and Volumina Medical.
The start-ups are developing solutions in cancer, infectious diseases, wound and joint care, medical imaging and cardiovascular disease.