The Launch Place Pre-Seed Fund 2 makes its first investment in CytoRecovery
DANVILLE, VA – October 19, 2018 – The Launch Place has been on a mission since 2013 to help early stage startups with strong teams and impactful business models get a product to market. The Launch Place announces today that biotech startup CytoRecovery will be the first to receive a $75,000 investment from The Launch Place Pre-Seed Fund 2, which was established in July of this year. To date, The Launch Place has invested in and is supporting 15 portfolio companies.
While searching for new investment opportunities that would align with their mission, The Launch Place was introduced to CytoRecovery. The Blacksburg, VA, startup has ties to Virginia Tech, and is manufacturing licensed microfluidic microchip technology developed at the university. This technology rapidly separates and recovers rare cell populations from biological samples. Because their product does not require antibodies, CytoRecovery believes it will aid ongoing cancer research and pharmaceutical development, as well as offer a low-cost method to create more effective treatment solutions for cancer patients.
“We are delighted to receive this investment from The Launch Place,” said Steve Turner, CytoRecovery’s CEO. “We appreciate this vote of confidence and look forward to working together to build a major new cell biology enterprise.”
CytoRecovery is not Turner’s first entrepreneurial endeavor. Turner is the founder of several other life science and biotech companies, and has brought multiple oncology products to market, including the first FDA approved gene test for breast cancer. His background, experience in starting new companies and the growing demand for cell separation technologies gave The Launch Place’s Pre-Seed Fund 2 Investment Committee enough confidence in the company to make the $75,000 pre-seed investment.
“With Steve’s experience in the biotech industry, he already has the connections a startup like CytoRecovery needs to get traction in a competitive market,” said Eva Doss, The Launch Place President and CEO. “We believe this partnership will have positive impacts that will stretch far beyond Blacksburg and Danville. We look forward to helping CytoRecovery succeed.”
The Launch Place Pre-Seed Fund 2 helps entrepreneurs expedite the early stages of their startup development at a time when it might be too early for angel funds and venture capitalists to invest. Applicants for Pre-Seed Fund 2 must be in the process of validating their business model with a developed Alpha product. According to Turner, the pre-seed funding will allow CytoRecovery to conduct beta testing with potential customers.
Not only does The Launch Place look for investment prospects with solid business plans, they also look for companies that will bring positive economic impact to the Dan River Region where they are headquartered. Over the next three years, CytoRecovery plans to utilize a local contract manufacturer for their instrument design, manufacturing, shipping and quality assurance.
About The Launch Place:
The Launch Place provides new and early stage business support services and seed funding for the Danville City and Pittsylvania County region of Virginia and Caswell County in North Carolina. As an entrepreneurship development organization with the purpose to plan, fund, launch and grow businesses, TLP helps companies to get started or to expand their operations by providing business consulting services, office space, and by investing in them through its investment funds.
CytoRecovery is a Virginia-based biotech startup that develops new products that improve the ability to rapidly separate and recover rare cell populations from biological samples, including tumor biopsies, for use in cancer research and pharmaceutical development.