Strand Gets Burrill Seal of Approval

February 11, 2013

By Bio-IT World Staff 

February 11, 2013 | Strand Life Sciences is no biotech newcomer (see, “Strand Inside”), but the Bangalore, India-based company is getting a burst of new attention after San Francisco-based Burrill & Company today announced a multi-million dollar investment in the company.

Burrill & Company is the sole investor in this round, and the financing included both a primary investment into Strand Life Sciences and a secondary buy-out of the lead Series A investors. The exact figures were not released.

Strand Life Sciences entered the Asian Pacific market in 2004 with tools for microarray products. Their avadis product soon captured about 20% of the market. In late 2010, the company released Avadis NGS with three NGS workflows—DNA-seq, CHIP-seq, and RNA-seq—and a strong focus on visualization. Strand had success with an “Intel Inside” business model, partnering with various companies to build Avadis analytics inside their products. Partners have included Ion Torrent, BIOBASE, CombiMatrix and others.

The proceeds of the current financing round will be used to accelerate the growth of the company's evolution into precision diagnostics in health care and expand Strand's reach into global markets, the company says.

“Strand will leverage its expertise in genomics and analytics that it has developed over a decade. In taking its technology platforms from bench to bedside, Strand is uniquely positioned to bring the power of high precision genomic measurement methods such a Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) to applications in screening and identification of diseases with genetic-basis and in precisely classifying cancer types to personalize therapy and care,” said a company statement.

Dr. Vijay Chandru, the Founder, Chairman and CEO, Strand Life Sciences (see, "Executive Q&A: Inside Strand Life Sciences") said that the company is delighted that the world's premier investment fund in the life sciences industry chose to support Strand. This investment will help Strand realize the true potential of its proven strengths in data science and multi-disciplinary bench analytics by taking them into the clinic.

"Our investment in Strand Life Sciences reflects our continued commitment to the life science sector in India,” said Tania Fernandez, director, Burrill & Company, in a statement. “We constantly analyze the Indian life science landscape, in search of leading edge platform technologies and products, helping companies develop these to full potential and expanding their access to global markets. Strand is a leading-edge bioinformatics company developing healthcare applications. We intend to work with Strand to help them build a preeminent position globally in what we consider the future of medicine: next-generation sequencing (NGS) and its applications in health care."