Galway-based EnteraSense secures €3.5m funding through Horizon 2020 and private investment

By Business & Finance
07 January 2019
Chiara Di Carlo, EnteraSense Programme Manager; Donal Devery, Founder, EnteraSense; Daragh Sharkey, Managing Director, EnteraSense. Image: Xposure

Galway-based medtech startup EnteraSense has raised €1 million in a seed round as well as securing €2.5 million through one of the latest European Union Horizon 2020 grants.

Founded by serial entrepreneur and CEO, Donal Devery, EnteraSense has developed a capsule that can detect bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract. Post surgical patients who are at risk of further bleeding can have the capsule attached to their stomach to monitor and detect bleeding and thus ensure they get appropriate and quick treatment if needed. To complement this, patients who present in ER and have suspected GI bleeding can swallow the capsule for a quick and easy diagnosis. This will mitigate unnecessary endoscopies which are invasive and in a lot of circumstances unnecessary.

Devery, along with EnteraSense MD, Daragh Sharkey and Programme Manager Chiara Di Carlo, has licenced the groundbreaking technology from Harvard University in Boston. The NDRC-backed company has successfully run initial trials to prove and validate the capsule. EnteraSense will move towards ‘First in Human’ studies by Q3 2019 and hope to be commercial with FDA and CE approval by mid 2020.

Funding EnteraSense

The two-year, H2020 EIC-FTI project grant – itself valued at €3.55m – is spread across four parties, with EnteraSense leading the research. Anecto, also based in Galway, Steripack (Poland) and a hospital in the Czech Republic are the other members of the project and will add significant expertise and value to the overall project aim of launching the product for patient use by mid 2020.

NDRC invested in EnteraSense in 2016, providing an integrated offering of knowledge, experience, expertise and a modest amount of capital to help EnteraSense attract follow-on investment. This initial funding validated the project and allowed EnteraSense to leverage the reputation of NDRC to attract further investment from valued shareholders.

EnteraSense’s current investor base includes physicians from the USA, a private equity fund based in Ireland, a Dubai-based strategic investor and local Galway business people.

EnteraSense’s unique technology to help mitigate gastrointestinal bleeding risk

Donal Devery, founder of EnteraSense: “We want to improve patient outcomes and drive cost down for the health system. Each process and function within the deliverables associated with the grant will help us achieve this goal.

“The fact that physicians are among our investors shows just how exciting EnteraSense’s product is. The EU’s backing only underlines that.”

Dr Matt Ben, Gastrointestinal Physician New York, investor in EnteraSense:

As a Gastrointestinal physician, I could immediately see the potential of this unique technology. Upper Gastrointestinal bleeding has a high mortality rate and can cause serious problems for patients and a solution to mitigate this is very welcome.

“The current diagnosis’s involves an invasive endoscopy which ultimately carries risk and is expensive. The ability to immediately diagnosis a bleed will result in better patient outcomes, quicker and more appropriate treatment and savings to the healthcare system.”