Crowdfunding star Scanadu banks $10.5M VC round

Scanadu raised $10.5 million to get Scout into clinical trials.--Courtesy of Scanadu

Over the summer, California's Scanadu made headlines around the world with Scout, its handheld diagnostic tool that raked in $1.6 million through crowdfunding platform Indiegogo. Now the company is ready to take its novel device to the clinic, securing a $10.5 million Series A and plotting its first trials.

The device, inspired by the tricorder of "Star Trek" fame, is designed to analyze, track and trend a patient's vital signs after one 10-second scan. The technology's Internet stardom came as little surprise upon its Indiegogo debut, but now Sanadu is among the first med tech companies to translate crowdfunding success into a sizable venture raise and a legitimate go-to-market plan.

The Series A, led by Relay Ventures and joined by the co-founders of Zappos and Yahoo, gives Scanadu the cash it needs to move toward FDA approval for the device, CEO Walter De Brouwer said, and the company has formed a medical advisory board and partnered up with the Scripps Translational Science Institute to host Scout's clinical program.

"With the experience and expertise of this group of investors and advisors, we know we're in the right position to take our vision all the way and put FDA approved devices in the hands of consumers," De Brouwer said in a statement.

In its first study, Scanadu will chart how well Scout helps patients with diabetes, hypertension and heart arrhythmia yield optimal blood pressure, using the results to design further trials. The company is also developing a disposable urine analysis platform called ScanaFlo, a smartphone-compatible device the company said could one day measure for pregnancy complications, pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes, heart-related kidney problems and urinary tract infections.

The Series A brings Scanadu's total raise to $14.7 million, looping in Zappos founder Tony Hsieh's VegasTechFund, Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang's Ame Cloud Ventures, Broe Group, Mindful Investors and Redmile Group.

"Scanadu is right at the heart of the next generation of computing, which combines mobility, sensors, cloud and big data," Yang said in a statement. "I am bullish on Scanadu and its potential to revolutionize the way we think about our health."

- read the announcement