Atlanta-based Florence Healthcare, a maker of software for clinical trials, has raised $7.1 million in a Series B funding round led by Fulcrum Equity Partners, with additional participation from Atrium Health and Bee Partners.
The round brings the company's total funding to at least $8.8 million, with a $1.7 million seed round from 2016.
WHAT THEY DO
Not to be confused with the UK social care employment marketplace of the same name, Florence Healthcare has been focused since 2014 on bringing clinical trial management into the cloud with its flagship product, eBinders. eBinders includes support for remote patient monitoring, project management and electronic signatures, and is interoperable with electronic medical records and clinical trial management systems.
Today Florence's software is in use at more than 5,000 clinical trial sites and sponsors.
"Between July 2018 and July 2019, the activity of sponsors and CRO users on the Florence platform increased by 229%," Blake Adams, head of marketing for Florence, said in a statement. "The rapid adoption by sponsors/CROs is a result of both the platform functionality and the cost savings resulting from remotely connecting to sites, as well as response to the increasing regulatory pressure for real-time oversight of trial sites."
WHAT IT'S FOR
The company is currently working on improving digital connectivity within that network, to enable more collaborative research.
"Our new partners, Fulcrum, Atrium and Bee, will now allow us to digitally connect sites to pharmaceutical sponsors and clinical research organizations (CROs), creating a new type of research network that speeds progress," CEO Ryan Jones said in a statement. "This secure connectivity enables rapid exchange of study documents and data, ultimately accelerating medical advancements for patients while reducing drug development costs and compliance risks."
Florence will also use funds to introduce additional product offerings as well as hiring additional sales, marketing and customer support personnel.
While some pharma companies are still hesitant to move their clinical trials into the cloud, there are a number of companies pushing to make doing so easier. Those include Medidata — a large public company which has made a couple of acquisitions, Myrtus and SHYFT Analytics, to make its clinical trial offering more expansive — and Limerick, Ireland-based Teckro, which raised $25 million earlier this year.
Additionally, a number of startups are focusing on a wide range of clinical trial-related applications.
ON THE RECORD
"Fulcrum is thrilled to back Ryan and the Florence team at this critical stage of the company's growth," Jeff Muir, partner at Fulcrum Equity Partners, said in a statement. "Their platform squarely fits our investment thesis of finding technology solutions that help solve critical business problems, particularly in the healthcare ecosystem. We congratulate them on their progress to date and are excited for their next chapter of success."