Crowdberry launches new investment campaign for Slovak company whose technology enables early cancer detection


Crowdberry launches new investment campaign for Slovak company whose technology enables early cancer detection

Glycanostics, a Slovak biotechnology company that has developed an innovative and accurate method for early cancer diagnosis, has launched a new investment campaign on the Crowdberry platform as part of a $10 million investment round. It plans to use the growth funds to develop and commercialize its revolutionary cancer diagnosis method, which is based on tracking changes in complex sugars on the surfaces of cells. Investor interest is proving to be considerable.  

Glycanostics' patented technology enables early and accurate diagnosis of various cancers from the blood, helping to improve treatment outcomes and save the lives of millions of patients by catching the disease in its early stages. Since the launch of the investment campaign on the Crowdberry platform, more than 100 investors have expressed interest in the €1.5 million fundraising. In addition to supporting a momentous product, the expected annual return in the tens of percent is also proving attractive to investors.

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Cheaper blood test to replace invasive biopsies

Glycanostics has developed a unique blood test-based method of cancer diagnosis that analyses changes in complex sugars on the surfaces of cells. These sugars – technically glycans – change as the disease progresses, allowing Glycanostics to identify cancer with much higher accuracy than most methods available today, saving not only time but also money. This test has already been successfully used by Slovak urologists, preventing numerous, avoidable and especially traumatic procedures, which often unnecessarily drain public health spending. 

We are currently providing the Giasay® Prostate diagnostic test to several urological outpatient clinics and we are also preparing a pharmacoeconomic study, which is an important prerequisite for the introduction of the test among the procedures covered by health insurance companies. However, this is only the beginning; the potential of the test is much broader than the field of prostate cancer. This field-proven test has the potential to detect 10 other types of cancer at an early stage and intensify cancer prevention. All it takes is a routine drawing of blood,” explains Eva Kováčová, CEO of Glycanostics. 

Breakthrough in diagnostics for millions

According to the American Cancer Society, more than 15 million new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year, whether prostate, lung, pancreatic, colon or breast cancer, for which this type of diagnosis is appropriate.

The new $10 million investment round with a targeted $5 million capital-raising via Crowdberry is aimed at boosting sales of the first Giasay® Prostate test, transferring the technology to mass production, obtaining a CE mark and FDA certification, completing the development of the test, and commercializing the test through a network of laboratories in Slovakia, Austria and Germany. 

The global market for breast cancer diagnostics alone is estimated to be close to €7 billion, which is also attracting interest from private investors.

Glycanostics' diagnostics have the potential to detect 11 different types of cancers, presenting a unique opportunity to participate in the development and commercialization of a revolutionary and patented diagnostic method, as well as from an investment perspective. Investor interest confirms this and we believe that the investment round will provide us with the necessary growth capital," explains Kováčová.  

The potential of the technology and the idea was confirmed by a panel of experts with investment, business and scientific experience who, out of more than 4,000 companies from across the EU, gave Glycanostics such a high rating that it was among the first 66 companies to benefit from the prestigious EIC Accelerator grant directly from Brussels. Glycanostics is one of only three Slovak companies to have received the grant, after MultiplexDX and Sensoneo, also from the Crowdberry portfolio.

Significant investor interest

A few weeks after the launch of Glycanostics’ second investment round, more than 100 investors with an indicated capital of more than €1.5 million had already expressed interest in investing. Private capital in Slovakia is replacing the lack of financial incentives from the public sector. This creates room for a similar type of investment campaign, where investors receive a stake in a company in exchange for capital with an expected high return. Although towards the riskier end of investing, more than 8,000 investors have taken part in this form of capital raising for more than eight years thanks to the Crowdberry platform.

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“Interest in private investing through our platform is growing mainly because we give investors transparent access to opportunities that are more the domain of investment funds in the world. We give Slovaks and Czechs the opportunity to invest in such opportunities, and often join institutional investment funds in investing in local companies with the potential for global growth and also the potential for interesting appreciation of their investment," explains Michal Nešpor, Crowdberry partner.

Biotechnology and the life sciences in general are considered to be an interesting investment area and a promising sector not only in Slovakia, but also globally, which is confirmed by the interest of investors in the current investment round of Glycanostics.

"The biotech sector is attractive for acquisitions by international pharmaceutical companies, which multiplies the appetite of investors to co-own companies in this sector. The expected return for investors, which at the current valuation and associated risk is 35%+ p.a., assuming a successful sale of the company, is also attractive," concludes Nešpor.

With the investment campaign currently underway, parallel discussions are also being held to supplement the financing with other investment funds, which will benefit not only the company itself in the development of additional products, their mass production and international sales, but also benefit private investors, as this potentially creates additional appreciation of their investment capital. 

Crowdberry investors through the investment platform and funds managed by a Crowdberry subsidiary have already invested in this way in a number of successful Slovak life sciences companies, such as DNA ERA, MultiplexDX and Poliklinika Váš lekár, as well as a senior centre for Alzheimer's and other patients, totalling more than €15 million.