SageTech Medical Equipment Ltd (SageTech) has completed a GBP2.9 million pre-series A investment, including a GBP1.6 million investment introduced by specialist venture capitalist EMV Capital.
As part of restructuring the company’s arrangements for the commercialisation of the business, EMV Capital’s parent company NetScientific PLC purchased GBP200,000 of shares, in line with its direct investment strategy and demonstrating the Group’s commitment to SageTech.
SageTech’s flexible, low-capex, modular system allows hospitals to capture waste anaesthetic gas exhaled by patients in absorbent, reusable canisters in the operating theatre. These canisters are emptied, the gas stored in bulk tanks and then collected by SageTech. The firm is currently developing technology which will allow this gas to be recycled, purified and sold commercially.
Waste anaesthetic gases are a substantial and broadly unaddressed cause of air pollution. Currently anaesthetic gas used by hospitals is captured by centralised hospital systems, and vented out into the atmosphere. The anaesthetic gas used by a midsized hospital has the same environmental impact as 1,200 cars each year. The NHS produces 5.4 per cent of all the greenhouse gases in the UK, as more than 95 per cent of all the anaesthetic gas used is disposed of into the atmosphere.
SageTech’s technology allows hospitals to use anaesthetic gas in areas that do not have access to fixed Anaesthetic Gas Scavenging Systems, the current solution used by hospitals to collect these gases. These systems are built into a hospital’s infrastructure when it is constructed, meaning that hospitals have not been able to expand operating theatre and intensive care capacity easily during the Covid-19 pandemic. SageTech systems can allow for ‘temporary’ operating theatres to be used.
This pre-series A round is part of a fundraising strategy to complete pilots that are currently underway within UK hospitals and to scale up commercial operations to meet demonstrated global demand for their technology platform. The funding will also be used to further development towards market authorisation for SageTech’s recycled anaesthetic product.
This investment follows a successful first close alongside existing investors in November 2020. Since the first close of this investment round, John Clarkson (Chairman of NetScientific PLC, EMV Capital’s parent company) has joined the board of SageTech, bringing his wealth of commercial expertise to the next stage of the company’s growth.
Clarkson comments: “The last year has proven the need for SageTech’s technology. As the UK and many other countries focus on achieving net zero by 2050, the case for anaesthetic gas recycling is only going to get stronger.
“For 95 per cent of all anaesthetic gas to be wasted is something that simply must change. SageTech is well-positioned to be at the forefront of that change. This funding round is going to power SageTech’s scaleup and it’s hugely exciting for NetScientific PLC and EMV Capital to be part of that.“
Iain Menneer, SageTech CEO, comments: “The successful close of the pre-Series A round is further endorsement of SageTech Medical’s innovative technology and business proposition. Recent fundraising gives the company the resources to complete development and final clinical testing with UK hospitals before launching our anaesthetic waste capture solution later this year.
“We have also attracted talented and committed individuals to complement the SageTech team. Demand from hospitals has remained high despite the inevitable demands of the pandemic. So in short, we now have the necessary ingredients to embark upon the next exciting chapter of SageTech’s story.”