|FemBloc--Courtesy of Femasys|
Women's health startup Femasys has raised $10.2 million in a Series B round. The financing will go to support pivotal testing for its FemBloc non-surgical female sterilization device and to marketing the company's two commercial diagnostics tools, one for female infertility and the other for cervical cancer.
FemBloc works by permanently blocking the fallopian tubes. It uses a biomaterial that's delivered through a catheter-based system and is intended to reduce the risks involved in surgical sterilization or permanent implants.
"This round of funding will enable Femasys to invest in the people and programs necessary to achieve the Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) milestone for FemBloc and expand commercialization globally for our diagnostic products to allow women access to better options when it comes to managing their health needs," said Femasys President and CEO Kathy Lee-Sepsick in a statement.
The startup markets FemVue Saline-Air device to assess infertility and the cervical cancer device FemCerv Endocervical Sampler.
In October 2013, Smith & Nephew ($SNN) exclusively partnered with Femasys to market FemVue in the U.S. The non-radiologic device is designed to aid in the evaluation of a sono-hysterosalpingogram. In that procedure the device is used to test the flow of saline and air through the fallopian tubes, which is visualized via ultrasound.
FemCerv is intended to be a less painful alternative to the current standard-of-care for cervical cancer testing, which is cervical scrapping. The scrapping often hurts, making women reluctant to return for follow-up care. FemCerv has a tapered tip and collects the sample tissue via circumferential rotation within the endocervical canal. Almost all patients report that the FemCerv procedure entails no, or only mild, discomfort.
This financing round was led by two family offices created by life sciences veterans: Legacy Capital Partners and Mario Family Partners. The former was founded by John Adams Jr., the former CEO of Adams Respiratory Therapeutics and developer of the Mucinex brand, and the latter by Ernest Mario, the former CEO of Alza that sold to Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) for $12 billion in 2001.
Adams will join the Femasys board as part of the financing. Los Angeles, CA-based life sciences boutique investment bank Salem Partners advised the Georgia-based startup is the transaction and also participated as an investor.
"Femasys fills an important and significant gap in the women's healthcare continuum," Adams said in a statement. "We believe that both physicians and patients will have great interest in the innovative new technologies and that we can provide value to the company through our highly experienced investor syndicate."
- here is the release