Health, Wellness & Biotech Startups Venture

Ovation Raises $21.5M Series B To Advance Health Care Testing

Today’s medicine is more complex and data driven than ever, and is out to provide technology for molecular diagnostic laboratories to enable them to speed up development of tests and treatments.

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“Access to precision medicine and diagnostics is uneven because there are many people who can’t afford it or it’s unavailable where they are,” Barry Wark, CEO of Ovation, told Crunchbase News. “If we can make development of specialized diagnostic tests faster and provide more access, the cost decreases and there are improved patient outcomes.”

The Boston-based clinical informatics startup raised $21.5 million in Series B funding, led by SignalFire, with participation from Madrona Venture Group, Borealis Ventures, StageDotO Ventures and industry veteran David Shaw.

Including the new round, Ovation has raised a total of $34.4 million in funding since the company was incorporated in 2017, which includes a $5 million Series A in 2019, led by Madrona, according to Crunchbase News.

There are more than 200,000 clinical laboratories in the U.S., but just several thousand specializing in molecular diagnostics, Wark said. In the last year, the company has doubled its customer base and experienced an increase of 200 percent in revenue. It is also working to connect all of the development data between labs and researchers.

“We are well positioned for molecular infectious diseases due to COVID-19 helping labs get off of the sidelines and test for this,” Wark said. “The last 10 months showed us that agility was lacking in health care, so we are doubling down on R&D, as well as new lines of testing, and working with new partners.”

Ovation will continue to scale with the help of SignalFire, which Wark said focuses on companies in Ovation’s stage of growth.

Chris Scoggins, venture partner at SignalFire, said in an interview that he looks for companies combining software and data analytics to reimagine workflows. Ovation is doing that in the life sciences industry with molecular genomics labs by moving a specialized solution to the cloud, he added.

“They need specialized software, and the real value is being able to stitch the data together, using Barry’s software, to create a solution to go after targeted therapeutics,” Scoggins said. “If the software is being used, then labs can coordinate and talk to each other in a better way to understand key questions.

“Just getting that data takes years and is costly,” he added. “If Ovation can shorten that time window, that is a lot of value–they will not only be successful, but shorten the timeframe for drugs to get to market.”

Photo of Winston Brasor and Barry Wark, co-founders of Ovation, courtesy of Ovation
Blogroll illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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