Sub-retinal prosthesis developer Retina Implant AG raised $18 million in venture capital funding.
The company’s sub-retinal implant is comprised of a microchip that’s inserted into the eye to restore vision for people suffering from retinitis pigmentosa, a retinal degeneration disorder.
The new financing will support the expansion of the device’s second clinical trial in addition to Retina Implant’s efforts to achieve CE Mark approval to begin selling and marketing its implant in Europe, according to the company. All of Retina Implant’s initial investors participated in the round, the company said.
"The continued support of our investors provides tremendous validation toward Retina Implant’s journey to restore vision to the blind. Our team looks forward to continuing the momentum we’ve achieved to ensure our device is available quickly to patients in need," Retina Implant CEO Walter Wrobel said.
In 2005, the company launched its first human trial. At the time, Retina Implant also began talking to venture capital firms in Europe, but the technology was deemed too risky, Wrobel told MassDevice in a December interview. It wasn’t until a wealthy businessman, who was personally interested because he had relatives who suffered from vision loss, that the company found significant outside investment, he said.
Last November, the company published results (PDF) from the first in-human clinical trial that proved the device can work in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
Here’s a roundup of the latest dealflow and investment news:
- Positron hires investor relations firm CSIR Group
Indianapolis-based Positron Corp. (OTC:POSC), a molecular imaging company specializing in the field of nuclear cardiology, announced the appointment of a professional investor relations team, the CSIR Group. Positron has retained the services of the NYC-based CSIR Group, for its future investor relations initiatives. The CSIR Group will work directly with Positron and its management team on a cohesive outreach program aimed at gaining exposure and increasing Positron’s profile in the financial markets.
- Nephros extends rights offering
River Edge, N.J.-based Nephros Inc. (OTC:NEPH), a medical device company developing and marketing filtration products for therapeutic applications, infection control, and water purification, announced the extension of the expiration date of its ongoing rights offering to 5:00 p.m., March 3. The rights offering was previously scheduled to expire at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on Feb. 28. During the extended offering period for the rights offering, any person who received subscription rights from Nephros during the original offering period may exercise those rights that have not already been exercised.
- BrainStorm raises $3.6 million in equity financing
Israel-based BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc. (OTC:BCLI), a developer of adult stem cell technologies and therapeutics, entered into securities purchase agreements with certain institutional and other investors in connection with a private placement financing in reliance upon Regulation S. BrainStorm received gross proceeds of approximately $3.6 million resulting from the sale of shares at a purchase price of $0.28 per share at the closing of the transaction. The company also issued warrants to the investors in the financing, with exercise prices of $0.28 and $0.50 per share, with expiration dates of one year and two years, respectively, after the closing of the financing. The warrants may only be exercised upon the investor’s payment in cash of the exercise price, and, if exercised in full, the warrants would bring in an additional $8.2 million in cash to the company.
- Varian announces $280 million accelerated stock repurchase
Palo Alto, Calif.-based Varian Medical Systems Inc. (NYSE:VAR) today announced that it has entered into a new agreement with Bank of America N.A. to repurchase $280 million of its common stock under an accelerated share repurchase program. Under the accelerated repurchase agreement, Varian will pay $280 million to Bank of America N.A. and receive approximately 3.5 million shares, or 85 percent of the shares to be repurchased based on the closing share price of the company’s common stock on Feb. 23. The total number of shares ultimately repurchased under the agreement will be determined upon final settlement. Varian will either receive additional shares of common stock or under certain circumstances be required to remit a settlement amount payable at Varian’s option in cash or common stock, based generally on the volume weighted average share price of Varian’s common stock during the next two to six months.