Release submitted by Jessica Taveau, director-marketing, Memphis Bioworks Foundation
Four entrepreneurial teams have been selected for the 2015 ZeroTo510 Medical Device Accelerator and begin the 12-week program at the Memphis Bioworks Business Incubator, yesterday. The 2015 participants are:
• Sweet Bio, with ties to both the University of Memphis and San Francisco, makes membranes for tissue regeneration used in oral surgeries utilizing medical-grade honey as one of the ingredients.
• SiteSaver, from Little Rock, Ark., provides hospitals with a simple device that protects and preserves patients' IV sites and central lines.
• GlucosAlarm, an international company from Chihuahua, Mexico, has created a technology to measure glucose in diabetic patients' urine, which simplifies the testing procedure.
• Inspire Living, from Fairfax Station, Va., offers a portable health monitor that enables anyone, anywhere, to conduct an automated respiratory and rapid vitals exam on a child.
The goal of the 12-week, mentor-driven program is to help medical device entrepreneurs navigate the start-up process, refine their business models and achieve the Food and Drug Administration's 510(k) pre-market notification filing. An entrepreneurship program for medical devices is an ideal match for the resources and talents in the Memphis area, which has the second-largest concentration of medical device companies in the United States.
The four selected companies have received $50,000 in initial seed capital from co-investors Innova, a pre-seed, seed and early-stage investor focused on starting and funding high-growth companies in the healthcare, technology and healthcare technology fields across the state of Tennessee; and MB Venture Partners, a Memphis-based venture capital firm that provides equity capital and strategic direction to life sciences start-ups.
At the end of the 12-week program, the participants will pitch to a group of investors at Demo Day, on August 13, 2015. The investors will select finalists, who will receive as much as $100,000 in additional capital infusion and the opportunity to further develop their businesses.
"Even with increased competition among business accelerators, we received applications from six continents and every region of the United States," said Allan Daisley, co-founder of ZeroTo510 and director of entrepreneurship and sustainability for Memphis Bioworks. "Recent national recognition and a track record of success have enabled us to continue to successfully recruit entrepreneurs with promising and innovative ideas to Memphis."
Now in its fourth year, the program has accelerated the creation of 16 new companies, more than 30 jobs, and $7.5 million in investments. Among these companies' successes: three are in the marketplace generating revenue, one has received FDA clearance, and one is treating patients in an IRB study. As the first-ever medical device accelerator, ZeroTo510 is now recognized as a benchmark model for subsequent medical device accelerators, including one in Australia. In March, ZeroTo510 was announced as one of the top 15 accelerators in the United States by the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project. The ranking was announced at SXSW and in TechCrunch.
ZeroTo510 is also an integral part of EPIcenter, a collaborative and community-wide strategic initiative that is helping entrepreneurs conceive, launch and scale businesses in the Memphis region. Beyond the accelerator process, ZeroTo510 participants will also have access to EPIcenter-led collaborations among entrepreneurial support organizations in Memphis, as well as expertise and support from the full entrepreneurial ecosystem in the region.
ZeroTo510 is operated by Memphis Bioworks Foundation and is an initiative of the Greater Memphis Regional Accelerator, a program funded by Launch Tennessee and the State of Tennessee. This project is funded under an agreement with Launch Tennessee and/or the State of Tennessee. [###]