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$4.3 million raised by Surgical Design Studios, thanks to Icehouse Ventures

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AUCKLAND, August 1, 2019, Medical device developer Surgical Design Studios (SDS), which designs transformative products that significantly improve the outcomes for patients with bowel cancer and inflammatory bowel disease, has today announced $4.3m has been raised in its first angel fundraising round led by Icehouse Ventures fund, “Tuhua 2.”

Founded two years ago at the University of Auckland’s Medical School Department of Surgery, with the assistance of the MedTech CORE and UniServices, SDS has developed a range of medical devices that dramatically reduce the time until patients can fully use their guts again following bowel surgery – from five months to two weeks.

This results in significant health benefits and reductions in clinical complications such as dehydration and infection. “We have seen very exciting results in the recent trials conducted at Auckland City Hospital, with these products able to deliver improvements that are not achievable with current standard of care,” says Co-founder and Colorectal Surgeon Greg O’Grady, who is the company’s Chief Scientific Officer.

SDS launched its angel funding round at the Icehouse Ventures’ Demo Day on June 13, where a dozen early-stage New Zealand companies presented to a diverse network of 500 investors.

The funds raised will help SDS bring its devices to market, with plans to launch in New Zealand later this year, and subsequently overseas following receipt of regulatory clearances.

CEO Garth Sutherland who joined SDS in May, says the experience of presenting at Demo Day and the support provided by Icehouse Ventures has been outstanding.

“This is an excellent round led by Icehouse Ventures because a number of the investors will contribute their expertise to our company,” says Mr Sutherland. “We have attracted investors with domain knowledge and networks in the sector we are targeting, and their contribution will accelerate our business both locally and in export markets.”

Also investing in this round are Sir Stephen Tindall’s K1W1, UniServices, Eden Ventures, and NZVIF.

“We love backing startups that can both become immensely valuable and improve people’s lives. SDS ticks both boxes,” says Icehouse Ventures CEO Robbie Paul.

“Further, there is nothing more exciting than seeing talent and expertise recycle back into the New Zealand startup ecosystem. The recent CEO appointment of veteran entrepreneur Garth Sutherland shows the value that investors put on people, as Garth was the founder of a company that was The Icehouse’s second-ever investment back in 2004.”

Icehouse Ventures fund Tuhua II has so far raised $26m in 2019, which is expected to be channeled into 25-30 NZ bold startups. This is in addition to the $10m raised by Icehouse Ventures this year for Eden Ventures III – and more than double the $11m that the first Tuhua Ventures fund raised when it launched in 2016.

Surgical Design Studio Granted Breakthrough Device Designation by US FDA

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Press Release
Source: Surgical Design Studio

On: Monday 10 June 2019
Companies: Surgical Design Studio

Surgical Design Studio (SDS), a provider of innovative products for gastrointestinal diseases, today announces its medical devices have been granted Breakthrough Device designation by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

This appears to be the first time a New Zealand medical device company has been granted entry into the FDA’s Breakthrough Devices regulatory pathway, which is designed to help patients gain more timely access to medical devices that provide a more effective treatment or diagnosis of life-threatening or irreversibly debilitating diseases or conditions.

Garth Sutherland, CEO of Surgical Design Studio said “this designation validates the importance of the work SDS is doing for patients with intestinal diseases such as bowel cancer and inflammatory bowel disease, and provides us with an opportunity to significantly reduce our time to market for the US.”


Surgical Design Studio Appoints Commercialisation CEO

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Press Release
Source: Surgical Design Studio Limited.
On: 4:00pm Auckland, Wednesday 8 May 2019

Companies: Surgical Design Studio Limited.

Surgical Design Studio, a provider of innovative medical devices for gastrointestinal surgery, today announces the appointment of Garth Sutherland as Chief Executive Officer to lead the company in its commercialisation phase of development.

Garth Sutherland has 30 years’ experience in the technology sector, including 18 yearsin the medical devices industry. Previously Garth founded digital health company Adherium. During this time Garth completed five rounds of capital raising a total of more than $50 million, including listing the company on the ASX and subsequent institutional rounds. Garth led the establishment of Adherium’s AstraZeneca partnership, and built the team, technology, IP, and manufacturing partnerships. Garth has also worked internationally for a number of leading high technology companies including Microsoft, and has a M.Sc. Physics with 1st class honours.

Garth takes on the CEO role from co-founder, company Director, and surgeon Associate Professor Greg O’Grady, who moves to the position of Chief Scientific Officer. Garth said “I am very excited to join Greg and the other exceptional team membersto bring the company’s award-winning products to market. The devices are so meaningful in improving health outcomes and quality of life for a range of patients, including those with colorectal cancer.”

Greg said “At Surgical Design Studio we are developing a suite of clinical products that are breakthrough solutions for patients undergoing surgical treatment for colorectal diseases, including colorectal cancer. I am enormously proud of the creativity and excellence being achieved by our engineering team at Surgical Design Studio, and am delighted to have Garth Sutherland joining us to bring these innovative products to market.”

Chairman Rob Davidson said, “We thank Greg sincerely for the key leadership role he has played in founding and growing SDS to be ready for commercialisation, and warmly welcome Garth to the team.”