Medtch firm Fire1 raises €40m to develop remote heart monitor

Dublin-based firm will double Irish workforce as it pushes to commercialise project

Photograph: iStock

Photograph: iStock

 

Dublin-based medtech firm Foundry Innovation & Research 1 (Fire1) has raised €40 million in funding to develop its remote heart monitoring product.

Fire1 said the Series C financing is the next step in the commercialisation and development of its product, which is designed to improve outcomes for heart failure, which affects 15 million people across the EU. In the US, treating the condition costs more than $31 billion each year; in Ireland, it accounts for 1.2 per cent of the total Irish health budget, at a total of €158 million.

The company, which currently employs 15 people and is based in DCU Alpha, intends to double its Irish team by the end of the year.

“Ireland is ideally placed to be a world leader in the provision of total connected health solutions,” said chief executive Conor Hanley. “The highly networked ecosystem and the industry expertise required to embrace the convergence between health and IoT, which is the future of healthcare globally, is already here in Ireland.”

The funding round includes backing from specialised EU healthcare investor Gilde Healthcare, which made its first investment into the Irish market through Fire1, along with Gimv and Seventure. Existing investors Lightstone Ventures, Medtronic, and New Enterprise Associates also took part.

“This infusion of new capital from these premier investors will enable us to accelerate our progress and deliver on our commitment to help patients with heart failure,” said Mr Hanley. “Heart failure is a life-threatening disease and a significant burden on patients and healthcare systems. Managing patients at home with novel digital health-enabled solutions will help intercept the trajectory of the disease and reduce the need for hospitalisation.”

The funding was welcomed by executive director of DCU Alpha Ronan Furlong. “Through their access to DCU’s research expertise, medical test beds and graduate talent, and co-location with a community of like-minded, innovative community of IoT focussed enterprises, Fire1 has been able to grow its footprint in the kind of flexible manner that fast-growing indigenous companies need,” he said. “The next stage required is a collaborative effort by public and private stakeholders to develop an IoT makerspace environment to drive forward the growth of connected hardware companies and realise more successes like that of Fire1.”