Omega Funds has provided an undisclosed Series B funding to robotics firm Andrew Alliance, which will be opening a Boston office in Copley Square. Vincent Ossipow, venture partner at Omega Funds, will join Andrew Alliance’s board of directors.
Andrew Alliance announced today that the Company will be opening up a Boston office in Copley Square. The Company also announced the closing of a series B financing round from Omega Funds, a leading global healthcare fund specializing in late stage life science investments. The Omega investment will enable Andrew Alliance to expand the reach of its well-received robots, by enabling new developments and the establishment of commercial operations in the U.S. market.
“Thanks to our growth strategy of investing in education, innovation and infrastructure, Massachusetts continues to lead the world in life sciences,” said Governor Deval Patrick. “We welcome Andrew Alliance to Massachusetts and look forward to their contributions to our thriving life sciences community.”
In January 2013, Andrew Alliance introduced a novel co-worker robot, called Andrew, designed to assist scientists in a routine laboratory operation called “liquid handling”. Andrew takes over the manipulation of commercial laboratory pipettes designed for manual operations, and frees scientists from the stressful execution of painful and repetitive laboratory pipetting work. Andrew enables scientists and technicians to readily automate both new and established protocols, all the while removing health risks and errors, and delivering reproducible and traceable results.
Elected “New Product of the Year” shortly after its introduction in 2013 by the Society of Laboratory Automation and Screening and by the MIPTEC Industry leaders, the Andrew robot was rapidly adopted by many academic and pharmaceutical customers across the world who quickly understood that Andrew provided an attractive alternative to either error-prone manual pipetting, or the burdensome adaptation of their protocols to highly complex automation systems designed specifically for high capacity activities.
“We were impressed by the application breadth of the Andrew pipetting robot. It is a unique combination of very advanced software, simple and yet versatile user interface, and robotic vision capability: the robot can be deployed in research, diagnostic and clinical laboratories across the life sciences industry,” said Otello Stampacchia of Omega Funds. “In this industry, screening and testing technologies continue to evolve, industrial and academic laboratories cannot afford any longer to rely on subjective manual operations with their lack of precision and scalability. We are truly delighted to participate in Andrew’s growth and success going forward, and to be able to contribute to shaping the next era of research by substantially improving one of the most repetitive and common tasks in life sciences laboratories worldwide”.
“The global trend of using Co-worker Robots in industrial applications has not yet reached the life science research field. However, the lack of simple-to-use but effective liquid handling solutions at the bench is a ball and chain for most researchers, wasting intellectual talents in repetitive and painful manual operations that add little value,” said Piero Zucchelli, CEO, Andrew Alliance. “The benefits to individuals are matched by benefits for the organization, since the Andrew robot can be amortized in less than a year of use. We believe Boston will be an ideal base for our US operations due to its leading academic and clinical institutions, and to the large concentration of life sciences start-ups and pharmaceutical companies.”
Dr. Vincent Ossipow, Venture Partner with Omega, will join Dr. Piero Zucchelli and Dr. Sam Eletr, co-founder of Andrew Alliance and past co-founder of Applied Biosystems, on the Board of Directors.
“On behalf of the Center, I would like to extend a warm welcome to the team at Andrew Alliance and thank them for their decision to open an office in Massachusetts,” said Susan Windham-Bannister, Ph.D., President & CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the agency charged with implementing Governor Patrick’s 10-year, $1 billion Life Sciences Initiative. “Andrew Alliance is an excellent addition to a growing cluster of local life science companies that are developing new, more efficient tools for lab research in the life sciences. We are excited that Andrew Alliance has chosen Massachusetts and look forward to partnering with them as they grow their business here.”
“Massachusetts has always been at the forefront of technology making meaningful impact on the process of drug discovery & development” said Robert K. Coughlin, President & CEO of MassBio, the life sciences trade association. “We welcome Andrew Alliance and look forward to their contribution to keep the Commonwealth on the cutting-edge of life sciences.”
About Andrew Alliance
Andrew Alliance is the Swiss pioneer in robotics for the Life Sciences sector. Founded in 2011 in Geneva, the initiative merged business and market experience in the Life Science field with advanced development and engineering knowledge to give birth to the Andrew Robot, a novel co-worker robot that makes laboratory operations more efficient. The Andrew robot is commercially available in more than 17 countries through a network of distributor partners, and distributed directly by Andrew Alliance elsewhere. For further information, please contact Andrew Alliance at [email protected]
Omega Funds is a leading venture capital and growth equity investor within the broad life sciences sector. Founded in 2004, the firm now operates through investment teams based in Boston and London and manages six limited partnership funds. For further information, please contact Omega at [email protected]
CAVEAT: The information contained in this release is as of August 4, 2014. Omega and Andrew Alliance assume no obligation to update forward-looking statements contained in this release as the result of new information or future events or developments. This release contains forward-looking information that involves substantial risks and uncertainties about Andrew Alliance life science robotic technology and the financing between Omega and Andrew to further develop its life science robotic technologies including its potential benefits and risks.