Innovate UK EDGE supports Medwise in their search for investment
Medwise.ai, is a virtual tenant at St John’s Innovation Centre in Cambridge. They have developed a search engine designed specifically for medical staff to help them find answers to clinical questions, at the point of need. Medwise.ai was first developed as a tool to help doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals access up-to-date information on Covid-19. The med-tech platform has proved so successful that it’s now being expanded to cover all diseases.
Dr Keith Tsui, co-founder of Medwise, says he knew there was a need for a platform like this because of his own experiences as a doctor. “I often found it challenging to find the information I needed quickly, both on the wards and in outpatient clinics. The amount of information out there is growing rapidly and it’s impossible to keep track of everything.”
According to research by CMI Media Group, more than 70% of physicians use search engines at least once a day for professional purposes. “Now Google is a great search engine, but it’s not designed for clinicians at the point of care,” says Dr Tsui.
To help the company prepare for growth, Medwise accessed support from the Innovate UK EDGE team at St John’s Innovation Centre. They took part in Pitchfest, the national investment readiness programme developed and led by SJIC and funded by Innovate UK EDGE.
They were ably supported by Daniel Dearing from the EDGE team, who has helped the company expand the platform and develop a clear investment strategy. Daniel worked with Medwise on several aspects of the business: improving its investment pitches, its target customer types and value propositions, its business models and revenue forecasting. He also supported the company with its pre-seed investment preparation.
As a result, Medwise.ai successfully closed an investment round of £588,000. It has recruited five new members of staff, accelerated development of the platform and engaged with new clients in paid pilot programmes.
Medwise is now partnering with Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board in Wales to expand the platform into secondary care after being encouraged and supported by the St John’s Innovation Centre projects team to successfully apply for a £311,000 Innovate UK Smart Grant. The 18-month project, which started in March 2021, will include a full academic study that will gather data such as how people use Medwise.ai, time savings and productivity gains. Medwise is also running a paid pilot with Suffolk & North East Integration Care System, tailoring the platform to support primary care clinicians find information related to long Covid.
Dr Tsui was impressed by Dan’s advice and input, “I’d like to thank Daniel for supporting us throughout the last year. His help and support has been invaluable. He has been a great sounding board and is always proactive about suggesting relevant introductions that could be beneficial for us. I found the Pitchfest programme and the investment readiness support from Dan fantastic and would recommend it to any early stage entrepreneur.”
“Keith has been a pleasure to work with. The work that we did together during and after Pitchfest proved invaluable in strengthening the company’s strategy and attracting investment and grant funding. It’s very satisfying now to see the company forging ahead with their plans and achieving success with their investments and commercial traction,” adds Dan.