Accelr8 scores investment of up to $35M

An investment group has taken a keen interest in Denver-based Accelr8 Technology ($AXK)--so much so, that it will make up to a $35 million stock investment. The funding is slated to complete the development and launch of the company's BACcel culture-free, diagnostic system for the identification and antibiotic resistance testing of bacterial and fungal pathogens.

The group, led Jack Schuler, John Patience, and Larry Mehren, might sound very familiar to industry watchers. Schuler and Patience founded Crabtree, which provided the capital for Ventana Medical Systems' first instrument. Schuler had previously been president and COO of Abbott Laboratories ($ABT).

Mehren's background includes stints at Roche Tissue Diagnostics and Ventana. He will be named CEO of Accelr8 upon closing of the financing.

"It's not a matter of them just bringing money; these are known veterans of the industry," said current CEO Thomas Geimer, who will step down after the investment and serve as a consultant for 18 months, as quoted by the Denver Business Journal. "There's talent here that will take this company to a level of exposure."

Although Geimer will ultimately step down, David Howson, current president and future CSO, foresees an increased need for development staff. "This leadership team and investment will allow us to rapidly advance BACcel development, and demonstrate its ability to quickly determine multi-drug resistance through the system's unique method of identification and sensitivity testing," he added.

- get more from the Accelr8 release
- read more from the Denver Business Journal