Scanadu picks up $35M, preps for expansion into China, Singapore

By Jonah Comstock
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ScanaduScanadu has raised $35 million from Fosun International and Tencent Holdings Limited, with participation from China Broadband Capital and iGlobe Partners of Singapore. Previous investors including Relay Ventures, Redmile Group, Ame Cloud Ventures and Three Leaf Ventures, an affiliate of The Broe Group, also participated.

The Moffet's Field, California-based company is designing a multi-function home health device called the Scanadu Scout, for which it has now raised $49.7 million in institutional funding, plus another $1.6 million on Indiegogo. In addition to developing the device for commercialization, Scanadu is also one of the eight finalists in the Qualcomm Tricorder X Prize, a $10 million competition to build a real-life version of Star Trek's tricorder.

“We continue to build out our family of products and move down the path to regulatory clearance in the U.S. and China,” Scanadu founder and CEO Walter De Brouwer, said in a statement. “Scanadu’s mission has always been to give eight billion people access to quality healthcare via their smartphones.”

Fosun is a conglomerate that owns hospitals, pharma companies and health insurance companies in China and has plans to expand internationally. Tencent Holdings Limited is a leading provider of Internet services in China, while China Broadband Capital and iGlobe partners are venture capital funds in China and Singapore, respectively.

"Fosun built Fosun Shanghai pharmaceutical’s business from the ground up, and we have long been committed to innovations in healthcare,” Guao Guanchang, chairman of Fosun International, said in a statement. “When we looked at Scanadu, we saw a company solving a problem that affects virtually everyone. Our investment in Scanadu aligns with our deep interest in leveraging the magic of the mobile Internet to improve ties across the hospital, pharmaceutical and health insurance industries.”

The presence of new investors from China and Singapore may signal Scanadu's intention to jump directly into those international markets. Scanadu is currently pursuing regulatory clearance in China as well as in the United States.

Scanadu's device purports to measure heart rate, core body temperature, blood oxygenation, and cuffless and calibration-free systolic and diastolic blood pressure in one scan in seconds, and shares those results to an app on Android and iOS smartphones. The company made the novel decision to ship 8,000 investigational devices to crowdfunding backers in advance of FDA clearance. Those devices were originally promised to arrive to the early backers in March 2014, but the launch was delayed more than six months. Now the company says the final devices will ship to backers this month.

The company made news earlier this month when its Tricorder X-Prize team merged with another team, Intelesens's Zensor. It also recently renamed its forthcoming urinalysis peripheral from ScanaFlo to, simply, Scanadu Urine. Scanadu Urine is currently undergoing clinical trials.