This morning Owkin, a medical research company that uses machine learning, announced that its Series A funding round has reached $70 million. This comes after Mubadala Capital and Bpifrance entered with a late $18 million in investment.
The Series A has been in the works for some time. The money has trickled in periodically. In May it announced a $25 million dollar raise. But the Series A round dates back at least two years. In 2018 the company reported that the Series A pot was up to $18.1 million.
WHAT THEY DO
The health tech company was developed in order to allow various stakeholders to collaborate in the life sciences realm by bringing together various information. It uses artificial intelligence to connect players in the research space, including scientists, clinicians, life science companies and academic researchers. It also uses its technology to help transfer large data sets.
Owkin employs machine learning to help organize, validate, predict and compare information. It is also able to build models and algorithms to interpret biostats and patient profiles. The end goal is to help researchers develop drugs and find the right medication for the right patient.
Its tool, called Owkin Studio, brings together genomic data, medical imaging, and clinical data in order to gain insights about treatments.
WHAT IT’S FOR
The company plans on using the new money to grow its technology. It will also go towards expanding its COVID-19 specific tool.
“This second investment of Large Venture in Owkin, a few weeks only after the first one, demonstrates how Bpifrance is committed to supporting the company in its ambition to ultimately bring better drugs more rapidly to patients while decreasing R&D costs for pharmaceutical and biotech companies,” Laurent Higueret, investment director at Bpifrance Large Venture, said in a statement. “Owkin now has the resources and the partners to position itself as a clear leader in the field of AI for biomedical research. We are also delighted to team up with Mubadala Capital for their first direct equity investment in France and thus further capitalize on our strategic partnership with them.”
THE LARGER TREND
The life sciences industry has been increasingly turning to digital for clinical trials. In fact, according to a recent study published in NPJ Digital Medicine, connected digital products have steadily become more prominent among clinical research efforts since the start of the millennium.
Owkin isn’t the only clinical research platform. TriNetX, a clinical trial data analysis company, raised $40 million in Series D funding last year.