Swedish medtech start-up Flow Neuroscience raises $9m

11 Aug 2021

Image: Flow Neuroscience

The company plans to expand its range of ‘self-managed solutions’ in the mental health space and to enter the US market.

Swedish medtech outfit Flow Neuroscience has closed a $9m Series A round led by Khosla Ventures, Swiss Health Ventures (part of insurer CSS Group) and Zühlke Ventures.

Kirin Health Innovation Fund, Hax (part of SOSV) and Schox also participated in the funding round.

Flow Neuroscience was founded in 2016 by Daniel Månsson and Erik Rehn, coming from backgrounds in clinical psychology and neuroscience, respectively. The start-up describes itself as “the creator of Europe’s only medically approved transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) device and behavioural therapy app for depression”.

The company plans to use the funding for research into “self-managed solutions” for other conditions including anxiety, and to seek approval from US regulators to begin selling its Flow headset there. The tDCS device has been available in the UK and EU since 2019.

In February, Flow Neuroscience acquired fellow brain stimulation start-up Halo for an undisclosed amount.

Månsson, who serves as CEO of Flow Neuroscience, said the company has a three-fold mission for the coming years:

“To advance our current treatment to be more patient-specific and to treat more people suffering from depression; to accelerate our collaboration with healthcare systems to provide alternative options for clinicians to prescribe and a complementary solution to reduce waiting times; and to work in collaboration with researchers in the field of tDCS to validate further self-managed treatment solutions for a wider range of mental health disorders, such as anxiety.”

Dr Alexander Morgan, partner at Khosla Ventures, added: “Bringing this portable, self-managed treatment to US patients will create a scalable, accessible solution to support the millions of people living with depression. The Flow approach can be adjunctive to other forms of therapy and can be an option for those who have not responded to other forms of treatment.

“We believe everyone in the world should have access to personalised, data-driven therapies. Flow is also empowering to users, as it provides substantial convenience and privacy; people can use it at home at times of their own choosing.”

Flow Neuroscience is the latest in a series of mental health-focused tech start-ups to attract investor interest, including several Irish companies. Irish-founded Woebot Health reached a funding total of $114m after raising fresh funding last month, while Dublin-based Frankie Health secured $1.25m in seed money in January.

Sweden’s start-up community has also seen big capital injections, with grocery delivery app Kavall’s $5.8m raise this week and e-bike rental service Vässla getting $11m in June.

Disclosure: SOSV is an investor in Silicon Republic

Jack Kennedy is a freelance journalist based in Dublin