FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE
House Rx | March 15, 2022
House Rx, a health technology platform focused on improving affordability and patient access to specialty medications, announced it has secured $25 million in Series A financing led by Bessemer Venture Partners, bringing total funding to $30 million.
House Rx's technology platform and pharmacy service enable specialty practices to offer medically-integrated dispensing, which means patients can receive both their physician and pharmacy care from one team, collaborating on a unified technology platform. Since it launched in March 2021, House Rx has partnered with four medical specialty practices and 30 prescribers in California and Washington.
"We have a simple idea: partner with specialty clinics all over the country to enable medically integrated dispensing where the physician, pharmacist, nurses and techs can work together as one team, under one proverbial roof, to improve patient care. Our vision for the future of specialty pharmacy is a more local, more collaborative, and ultimately a more affordable system that leads to much better outcomes for patients."
Ogi Kavazovic, CEO and a co-founder
Specialty medications, which include treatments for cancers, rheumatic diseases and other chronic and acute conditions, are some of the most expensive drugs available. Unlike infused therapies which are administered in the clinics, the burden of specialty medication access and adherence often falls on patients, who typically need to battle several large bureaucracies to gain access to their medications. These often lead to multi-week delays in treatment and much lower adherence rates compared to medications administered in clinics.
Currently, specialty medications are mainly dispensed via mail by a patient's insurance company, not their doctor or a pharmacy a patient chooses. A growing body of research demonstrates that when patients obtain timely access to cancer treatments directly from their care team, they have better outcomes, including improved quality of life and increased survivability.
House Rx currently has over 30 employees, who are mostly software engineers and pharmacy operations. In addition to Bessemer Venture Partners, First Round Capital, Character.vc, and 1984.vc participated in the Series A funding. First Round Capital led the seed round as the initial investor alongside Khosla Ventures, Maverick Ventures, and 1984.vc. The funding from this latest round will go towards continued investments in House Rx's technology platform and scaling pharmacy operations.
"The specialty pharmacy market is in much need of a new approach - the current system severely lacks in patient choice and innovation, and we think House Rx's vision for a more modern, more decentralized approach will have incredible impact," said Steve Kraus, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners. "Bessemer is proud to back a company with a mission to ultimately make it easier and more cost effective for patients to get the treatment they need."
In addition to Kavazovic, the health technology start-up was co-founded by Tesh Khullar, who serves as the company's President. Kavazovic and Khullar are former Flatiron Health executives, where they gained experience working closely with hundreds of oncology clinics. The company's Chief Pharmacy & Operating Officer is Denali Cahoon, PharmD, who is a former executive at Trellis Rx.
"The antiquated pharmacy systems developed decades ago inhibit coordinated patient care and increase costs. The current system also prevents patients from choosing where they can get their medically prescribed life-sustaining therapies," said Tesh Khullar, President and a co-founder. "We started House Rx to make the medically integrated dispensing model the new normal in specialty pharmacy. With the right technology, and the right distribution partners, we can re-establish the partnership between physicians and pharmacists that brings a new level of transparency and patient care."
House Rx's technology platform helps prescribers and pharmacists collaborate more effectively via one integrated system. Built based on in-depth feedback from pharmacists and physicians, the platform is designed specifically for the management of specialty medication, and includes built-in analytics to enable continuous improvement in operational efficiency and quality of care.
The specialty medical practices that have already partnered with House Rx include Care Oncology Center, California; Sarcoma Oncology, California; Arthritis Northwest Washington; and Northwest Medical Specialties, Washington.
About House Rx
House Rx is a technology-enabled service company focused on making specialty medication more accessible and affordable. We do so by helping clinics dispense specialty medications to their patients in a medically-integrated way using pharmacist expertise and modern technology. By helping physicians and pharmacists collaborate on patient care, we're able to improve patient outcomes, lower the cost of care, and create a better experience for patients and their caregivers.
FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE
Peloton Equity | March 22, 2022
Peloton Equity, LLC a Connecticut-based private equity firm that seeks to invest growth capital in innovative healthcare companies, announced that it has closed a growth and recapitalization investment in Grenova, Inc. a fast-growing manufacturer of green technology for the life sciences industry. Peloton, along with Hamilton Lane Impact Fund II and Morgan Stanley AIP Private Markets, invested growth capital and partnered with management and other investors to acquire a majority stake in Richmond, Virginia-based Grenova. The transaction is anticipated to enable Grenova to accelerate its sales and marketing efforts, launch additional products, and build out its presence globally. Ali Safavi, founder, president and CEO of Grenova, along with other management and certain existing shareholders will retain a significant ownership stake in the Company. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Founded in 2014 by Ali Safavi, Grenova designs, manufactures, and distributes instruments and associated consumables to the lab industry. The Company’s technology enables its customers – clinical labs, pharmaceutical/biotech companies, research institutions, agricultural companies, and others – to wash, dry and re-use single-use plastics. Grenova’s products aim to advance healthcare toward a more sustainable future by lowering costs in the laboratory industry, reducing biohazard waste in the environment, and mitigating supply chain risk for plastic consumables.
“I am thrilled to be partnering with Peloton to help Grenova capitalize on the massive and unmet need for sustainability solutions in laboratories around the world,” said CEO Ali Safavi. “Peloton’s expertise and network will bring additional resources and business development opportunities to Grenova, and this growth-oriented transaction will help us accelerate the industry’s adoption of our innovative products and technologies.”
“Peloton seeks to partner with high-growth companies like Grenova that deliver tangible and enduring value to the healthcare industry. The utilization of disposable plastics in the lab setting is rapidly growing and we are excited to support Grenova’s mission to address this unsustainable trend.” Michael O’Rourke, partner at Peloton, added, “We believe Grenova’s combination of differentiated product technology, sustainability value proposition and high-quality customer service is unique in the massive and growing life sciences tools industry. We are very excited to work with Ali and his team in supporting Grenova’s next phase of growth.”
Ted Lundberg, partner and co-founder of Peloton Equity
Crosstree served as the exclusive financial advisor to Grenova with respect to this transaction. Goodwin Procter LLP acted as legal advisor to Peloton and Williams Mullen acted as legal advisor to the Company.
Founded in 2014, Grenova™ is an innovative company that is revolutionizing lab consumables through high-quality waste reduction solutions. Grenova’s mission is to lower costs in the laboratory industry and reduce biohazard waste in the environment by delivering groundbreaking approaches in dealing with plastic consumables. Grenova’s existing products include the TipNovusTM family of pipette tip-washing solutions for labs such as the Automated TipNovus (ATN) Package, a fully integrated tip-washing solution; the TipLumisTM family of HEPA-filtered, temperature-controlled, UV-sanitized tip storage solutions; GrenoClean, a proprietary and scientifically validated cleaning solution; and Purus by Grenova™, a novel microwell plate cleaner launching in 2022. For more information, visit Grenova.
About Peloton Equity
Peloton Equity, LLC is a private equity firm focused exclusively on growth capital investments in the healthcare industry. Peloton was formed in 2014 as the successor firm to Ferrer Freeman & Company and invests in companies with between $10 million and $200 million of revenue that have the management team, market opportunity and business model to grow revenues significantly over the life of its investment. Peloton seeks to be a significant investor in companies with high-growth potential, driven by a clear value proposition to the healthcare industry. Peloton’s investment team has invested in over 35 unique healthcare companies and has deployed over $800 million in capital. Recent investments include AeroSafe Global, ClearSky Health, Friday Health Plans, and Journey Health & Lifestyle.
About Hamilton Lane
Hamilton Lane is a leading private markets investment management firm providing innovative solutions to sophisticated investors around the world. Dedicated exclusively to private markets investing for 30 years, the firm currently employs more than 520 professionals operating in offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Hamilton Lane has $851 billion in assets under management and supervision, composed of over $98 billion in discretionary assets and nearly $753 billion in advisory assets, as of December 31, 2021. Hamilton Lane specializes in building flexible investment programs that provide clients access to the full spectrum of private markets strategies, sectors and geographies.
About Morgan Stanley AIP Private Markets
AIP Private Markets, an investment team within Morgan Stanley Investment Management, seeks to deliver innovative private markets solutions to a global client base. It’s built-for-purpose team of ~60 dedicated professionals draws.
Texas Children Hospital | December 29, 2021
Texas Children's Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine announced today that CORBEVAX™, a protein sub-unit COVID-19 Vaccine, whose technology was created and engineered at its Center for Vaccine Development (CVD), has received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) approval from the Drugs Controller General ofIndia(DCGI)to launch inIndiawith other underserved countries to follow.
Dubbed "The World's COVID-19 Vaccine", it uses a traditional recombinant protein-based technology that will enable its production at large scales making it widely accessible to inoculate the global population. The initial construct and production process of the vaccine antigen was developed at Texas Children's Hospital CVD, led by co-directors Drs. Maria Elena Bottazzi and Peter Hotez and in-licensed from BCM Ventures, Baylor College of Medicine's integrated commercialization team, to Hyderabad-based vaccine and pharmaceutical company Biological E. Limited (BE).
CORBEVAX™ after completing two Phase III clinical trials involving more than 3000 subjects was found to be safe, well tolerated and immunogenic:
CORBEVAX™ demonstrated superior immune response in comparison with COVISHIELD™ vaccine when assessed for Neutralizing Antibody (nAb) Geometric Mean Titers (GMT) against the Ancestral-Wuhan strain and the globally dominant Delta variant. CORBEVAX™ vaccination also generated significant Th1 skewed cellular immune response.
CORBEVAX™ nAb GMT against Ancestral-Wuhan strain is indicative of vaccine effectiveness of >90% for prevention of symptomatic infections based on the Correlates of Protection assessment performed during Moderna and Astra-Zeneca vaccine Phase III studies.
CORBEVAX™ nAb GMT against the Delta strain indicates a vaccine effectiveness of >80 percent for the prevention of symptomatic infections based on published studies.
While none of the subjects who took CORBEVAX™ or COVISHIELD™ had serious adverse events, CORBEVAX™ had 50 percent fewer adverse events than COVISHIELD™.
In the continuous monitoring of phase II studies, CORBEVAX™ showed high persistence of immune response as indicated by <30% drop in nAb GMT till 6 months second dose as compared to >80% drop observed with majority of the vaccines.
"Protein-based vaccines have been widely used to prevent many other diseases, have proven safety records, and use economies of scale to achieve low-cost scalability across the world," said Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi, Professor and Associate Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor and Co-Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development. "Our decade-long studies advancing coronavirus vaccine prototypes has led to the creation of this vaccine, which will fill the access gap created by the more expensive, newer vaccine technologies and that today are still not able to be quickly scaled for global production."
The need for safe, streamlined, low-cost vaccines for middle- to low-income countries is central to the world's fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Without widespread vaccination of populations in the Global South, additional virus variants will arise, hindering the progress achieved by currently available vaccines in the United States and other Western countries.
"This announcement is an important first step in vaccinating the world and halting the pandemic. Our vaccine technology offers a path to address an unfolding humanitarian crisis, namely the vulnerability the low- and middle-income countries face against the delta variant," said Dr. Peter Hotez, Professor and Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor and Co-Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development. "Widespread and global vaccination with our Texas Children's-Baylor-BE vaccine would also forestall the emergence of new variants. We have previously missed that opportunity for the alpha and delta variant. Now is our chance to prevent a new global wave from what might follow."
"Over the years, we have worked to make quality vaccines and pharmaceutical products accessible to families around the world. With this as our backdrop, we resolved to develop an affordable and effective COVID-19 vaccine. It has now become a reality. We deeply appreciate Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, Baylor, CEPI, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the government of India for their continuous support and cooperation during this journey. The combined efforts & unceasing support demonstrate that we can collectively overcome any challenge".
Mahima Datla, Managing Director, Biological E. Limited
ABOUT TEXAS CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL
Texas Children's Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children's hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children's has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women's health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Tower for pediatric research; Texas Children's Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children's Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children's Hospital The Woodlands, the first hospital devoted to children's care for communities north of Houston. The organization also created Texas Children's HealthPlan, the nation's first HMO for children; has the largest pediatric primary care network in the country, Texas Children's Pediatrics; Texas Children's Urgent Care clinics that specialize in after-hours care tailored specifically for children; and a global health program that's channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children's Global Health program leads efforts that advance health care equity through innovative collaboration in care, education and research for underserved populations globally. Texas Children's Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine.
ABOUT TEXAS CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL CENTER FOR VACCINE DEVELOPMENT
Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development is one of the leading vaccine development centers in the world. Established in Washington DC as the Sabin Vaccine Institute Product Development Partnership (PDP) in the year 2000 and after relocating to the Texas Medical Center in 2011, it rebranded as Texas Children's Center for Vaccine Development. For the past two decades it has acquired an international reputation as a non-profit PDP, advancing vaccines for poverty-related neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) and emerging infectious diseases of pandemic importance. In addition, it builds and strengthens capacity for vaccine development locally and with foreign nations and leads global efforts to guide and influence vaccine policy and advocacy through "vaccine diplomacy" as an international bridge for peace and vaccine development capacity.
ABOUT BCM VENTURES
Baylor College of Medicine Ventures is the commercial engine of the health sciences university, created to support the translation of academic knowledge and intellectual assets for the benefit of society. We do this by engaging university innovators, entrepreneurs and industry to fully develop ideas along their best commercial path. We foster a culture of commercialization and engage with industry to identify market opportunities for collaborative ventures.
ABOUT BIOLOGICAL E. LIMITED
Biological E. Limited (BE), a Hyderabad-based Pharmaceuticals & Biologics Company founded in 1953, is the first private sector biological products company in India and the first pharmaceutical company in Southern India. BE develops, manufactures and supplies vaccines and therapeutics. BE supplies its vaccines to over 100 countries and its therapeutic products are sold in India and the USA. BE currently has 8 WHO-prequalified vaccines in its portfolio. In recent years, BE has embarked on new initiatives for organisational expansion such as developing generic injectable products for the regulated markets, exploring synthetic biology and metabolic engineering as a means to manufacture APIs sustainably and developing novel vaccines for the global market.
Graham Healthcare Group | December 21, 2021
Graham Healthcare Group, a leader in homecare, palliative and hospice services, today announced its acquisition of InTeliCare Health Services, a provider of home health services in central Florida. The agreement was finalized on December 15th, 2021, and marks Graham's first expansion into Florida.
Graham will integrate InTeliCare into its Residential Home Health division to accelerate access to personalized home health care throughout Florida. Residential is a leading post-acute home care network serving communities in Michigan, Illinois and Pennsylvania.
Integrating InTeliCare into Residential Home Health will bring together industry-leading, patient-centered home health services to strengthen the continuum of care for patients across central Florida.
"More than one-fifth of Florida's population is over 65, and that number continues to grow. With the baby boomer generation doubling in size and an increase in comorbidities, this is an ideal time for Graham Healthcare Group to begin serving people in the state of Florida in their own homes with high-quality post-acute and end-of-life care."
David Curtis, Chief Executive Officer of Home Health at Graham Healthcare Group
"With the addition of InTeliCare, we're poised for growth as we continue our mission to transform home care and improve patient experiences," Curtis said. "This agreement expands the ability of Graham Healthcare Group to deliver consistent, high-quality care across the spectrum of home health and further strengthens our foundation for success."
Irene Tuttle, InTeliCare Founder and Chief Executive Officer, will serve in an advisory role following the deal's close. Toni Walker, InTeliCare's longstanding Vice President of Operations, will maintain leadership over day-to-day operations.
"We strongly align with Residential's values of care and community," Tuttle said. "This is an extraordinary opportunity to join forces with an organization that shares our employee- and patient-driven approach to care."
"We are confident that the powerful synergies and added strength this partnership creates will continue to elevate the value and experience of post-acute care and advance the continuum of home health care in central Florida," Tuttle added.
Residential Home Health intends to retain InTelicare's workforce and will support them with enhanced operational efficiencies and advanced clinical and technology innovations.
Both Residential Home Health and InTeliCare are known for strong, employee-friendly cultures. Residential has been recognized as a top workplace for 11 consecutive years in the Detroit market and was recognized in the Chicago and St. Louis markets in 2021.
About Graham Healthcare Group
A subsidiary of Graham Holdings Company, Graham Healthcare Group has designed business and technology solutions to drive better care, outcomes and productivity in home health and hospice services for more than 20 years. Itincludes Residential Healthcare Group, Allegheny Health Network-Healthcare @ Home, Mary Free Bed at Home, Clarus, and CSI Pharmacy. Itis deeply committed to radically changing the home care model by putting patients and their families at the top of the paradigm, while enhancing the quality and consistency of healthcare in the most convenient and cost-effective setting possible: at home.
About Residential Home Health
Based in Troy, Michigan, Residential Home Health is a leading provider of home health, palliative and hospice services in Michigan, Illinois and Pennsylvania. Residential is one of the fastest growing home health networks with 2,500 dedicated care professionals.
About InTeliCare Health Services
Based in Boca Raton, InTeliCare is a leading provider of home health services in central Florida. The company has 80 employees serving nearly 300 patients from three offices.