The EIB is providing STAT-Dx (STAT-Diagnostica & Innovation, S.L.), a Spanish company developing advanced molecular diagnostic systems to help combat meningitis and other infectious diseases, with a EUR 20 million loan facility.
The European Investment Bank (EIB), the EU bank, is supporting the improvement of infectious diseases diagnostics through a EUR 20 million loan agreement signed today with STAT-Dx (STAT-Diagnostica & Innovation, S.L), a Spanish start-up based in Barcelona developing a new molecular diagnostics device capable of identifying a wide range of infectious pathogens, such as meningitis, respiratory or gastro-intestinal infections in about one hour. STAT-Dx’s technology enables clinicians to test simultaneously for the presence or absence of multiple pathogens caused by or associated with specific syndromes, allowing faster diagnostics and improving survival rates in “near-to-care” environments such as intensive care units and emergency rooms.
The EIB loan was signed today at the EU Innovative Enterprise Summit held in Malta and attended by EIB Vice-President for Innovation Ambroise Fayolle. It will be drawn down in two tranches over a three-year period, with full repayment on the maturity date five years ahead. This agreement will serve to co-finance a three-year project aimed at enabling faster and more accurate diagnostics that will replace current complex protocols to obtain analytical results. The DiagCORE system developed by STAT-Dx is a cartridge based single-test solution. By providing instant available results this new technology will enable immediate and well informed medical decisions to be made. The CE-marking of DiagCORE with a respiratory panel application is planned by the end of 2017.
“Innovation and research is a priority of the EU bank”, said EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle at the signing ceremony. “The agreement signed today with the company STAT-Dx illustrates the EIB’s determination to back high risk projects that have a direct positive impact on the lives of citizens benefiting from the most outstanding technology made in Europe.”
Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation said: "This loan is an example of how the European Commission employs innovative financing mechanisms to support the fight against major threats to society, such as antimicrobial resistance. With this project, a quick diagnosis will enable better clinical decision-making and targeted patient management, and speed up the development of an innovative diagnostics platform for infectious diseases.
“We are pleased to have received this loan from the EIB, which brings together the strength of public and private financing to accelerate the development and commercialisation of novel diagnostic technologies,” said Jordi Carrera, Chief Executive Officer of STAT-Dx. “The InnovFin Programme helps bridge an important gap for innovative companies like STAT-Dx, from early market introduction to commercialisation, which is key to fostering a strong and vibrant industry in Europe that can compete on the global stage.” Didier Le Normand, Chief Financial Officer of STAT-Dx added:“EIB joins as a new reputable financing partner to bring STAT Dx, alongside its strong and supportive shareholder base, additional resources for its next stage development”.
Innovation and skills are key ingredients for ensuring sustainable growth and creating high-value jobs. This is why the EIB is a major partner for projects that develop innovation and long-term competitiveness for a growing economy. In 2016, the EIB supported innovation and skills with EUR 13.5bn of financing.
InnovFin financial products
The STAT-Dx project has the financial backing of the European Union under Horizon 2020. InnovFin is a new range of EIB Group products designed to facilitate access to finance for innovative business. This new EU research program was launched in 2014.
Under Horizon 2020, the EU research programme for 2014-20, the European Commission and the European Investment Bank Group (EIB and EIF) launched a new generation of financial instruments and advisory services in 2014 to help innovative firms access finance more easily. Running until 2020, "InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators" offers a range of tailored products which will make available billions of euros of financing in support of research and innovation (R&I) by small, medium-sized and large companies and the promoters of research infrastructures.
Backed by funds set aside under Horizon 2020 and by the EIB Group, InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators supports R&I activities, which by their nature are riskier and harder to assess than traditional investments, and therefore often face difficulties in accessing finance. All are demand-driven instruments, with no prior allocations between sectors, countries or regions. Firms and other entities located in EU Member States and Horizon 2020 Associated Countries will be eligible to be final beneficiaries.
The Infectious Diseases Finance Facility provides a broad range of financial products ranging from standard debt to risk sharing instruments for amounts between EUR 7.5 and EUR 75 million to innovative players active in developing new innovative vaccines, drugs, medical and diagnostic devices or novel research infrastructures for combatting infectious diseases. Final recipients will project developers that have successfully completed the pre-clinical stage, and preferably early stage clinical development, and would require clinical validation or be ready for later stage clinical trials
Founded in 2010 in Barcelona and backed by leading international healthcare investors, STAT-Dx) is focused on the development, manufacturing and commercialisation of “Closer to Care” diagnostic solutions in areas where fast and accurate diagnostic results are crucial such as infectious diseases and critical care. Its DiagCORE® in vitro diagnostic system is a versatile, easy-to-use platform that consolidates molecular and immunoassay techniques in a single device.
The EIB has agreed to lend up to EUR 10 million to Scope Fluidics, a Polish medical technology company developing innovative products in the field of medical diagnostics. Scope Fluidics uses microfluidic technologies (involving the manipulation of small quantities of test samples within a disposable diagnostic cartridge) and focuses on rapid characterization of antibiotic resistance of bacteria and on ultra-fast detection of bacterial and viral pathogens (including COVID-19).
Research and development of fully automated testing of bacteria and infectious diseases by POCARED Diagnostics will be accelerated by EUR 22 million of European Investment Bank specialized venture debt. The new loan is supported by the ‘InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators’ Infectious Diseases Finance Facility backed by Horizon 2020, the European Union’s research and innovation programme.
The EIB has provided a EUR 10 million long-term loan to Swedish biotech company Cavidi AB for developing a next generation automated testing device for HIV viral load. This is the first transaction under InnovFin Infectious Diseases, an innovative high risk-taking financial instrument recently established within the new generation of financial products for innovative and growth companies – InnovFin.