Investing in the next frontier in the treatment and prevention of stroke

Ceroflo plans to revolutionise how medical professionals tackle one of the leading causes of death and disability around the world

John O’Dea, Ceroflo co-founder, Mark Gibbs, corporate finance partner with DHKN, Chloe Brown, Cereflo chief executive officer, and Eamon Brady, Ceroflo co-founder: Galway-based Ceroflo has launched an EIIS investment round to raise up to €5m to advance its disruptive technology to revolutionise stroke treatment. Picture: Andrew Downes

Irish company Ceroflo is developing a revolutionary device for the treatment and prevention of stroke – one of the leading causes of death and disability across the world.

Ceroflo, which is based in Galway city, is backed by some of the most respected and recognisable names in the Irish medtech sector. It has engaged Galway-based accounting firm DHKN to lead an EIIS investment round to raise up to €5 million to help advance its innovative, disruptive technology.

Investment in Ceroflo provides a rare opportunity to participate in a funding round for a best-in-class medtech business which is creating technology designed to save lives.

Organisation’s Name: Ceroflo

Number of employees: 4 (currently)

Turnover: N/A

“Ceroflo is developing an innovative stent device to address intracranial atherosclerotic disease (ICAD), the next frontier in the treatment and prevention of stroke. We are approaching the problem with a unique understanding of the challenges and are designing the technology with clinicians who have more than 50 years’ collective experience treating this disease,” says Chloe Brown, chief executive of Ceroflo.

Ceroflo brings together a stellar team from the Irish medical device industry including the founder and some of the senior leadership team from Neuravi, a company acquired in 2017 by Johnson and Johnson (J&J) in one of the biggest ever medtech acquisitions in Europe.

Ceroflo co-founder Eamon Brady founded Neuravi alongside John O’Shaughnessy and they serve as chairman and adviser of Ceroflo respectively. Brown was previously Neuravi’s commercial leader and Ceroflo’s chief technology officer is Brendan Casey, formerly R&D senior manager at Neuravi.

“There are many parallels to draw between Ceroflo and our Neuravi journey. Neuravi’s success was driven by a clear strategy and focused execution, bringing a novel technology solution to an enormous market opportunity with a highly-experienced team of industry professionals,” says Eamon Brady, chairman and co-founder of Ceroflo.

“Ceroflo is similarly approaching an enormous unmet clinical need with a unique solution led by a specialist neurovascular team,” he said. “I am excited to see the progress that this funding round will help bring to Ceroflo.”

Other co-founders include serial medtech entrepreneur John O’Dea, leading stroke interventionists Professor Tommy Anderson of Karolinska University Hospital, Sweden, Dr Leonard Yeo of National University of Health Singapore and Dr Paul Bhogal of Royal London Hospital.

As in the heart and other parts of our bodies, the arteries in our brains can become narrowed and finally blocked with plaque. This is called intracranial atherosclerosis (ICAD). Some 10-50 per cent of strokes are caused by ICAD for which current treatment options are suboptimal, leaving this large population of patients facing the ongoing risk of devastating strokes.

Pharmaceutical therapies aimed at reducing the stroke rate are currently deemed the safest form of treatment for patients with symptoms of ICAD, but these patients have a 20 per cent risk of suffering a devastating stroke within 12 months.

The Ceroflo SubMax Stent represents a game-changer in the treatment of ICAD as its shape and structure has been developed to suit the unique challenges of this disease. It is designed to gently increase vital blood flow to the brain while reducing the risks associated with first-generation devices, including haemorrhage and stroke.

“The treatment of ischemic stroke has been growing exponentially over the last ten years and we are finding more and more patients suffering stroke from ICAD,” says Prof. Tommy Andersson, chief medical officer, Ceroflo and neurosurgeon at the Karolinska Hospital in Sweden.

“The tools we have to treat ICAD today are difficult to use and cause complications, so we often don’t even treat many of these patients. We have set out to develop a device to treat the millions of patients who currently have no good treatment option, to enable them to live out their lives, stroke-free.”

Last November, a consortium led by Ceroflo, including manufacturing firm Advant Medical and the Medical and Engineering Technologies Centre at Atlantic Technological University, secured €3.6 million from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment’s Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund (DTIF). Ceroflo is now looking to raise up to €5 million through the EII Scheme.

“This is a very positive time for Ceroflo,” says Brown. “Following our successful DTIF grant award and the incredible year since, we are excited about further development of the technology. This EIIS investment will enable Ceroflo to bring the SubMax Stent to 30 patients in a first in-human trial, a significant value inflection point. It will also allow us to provide a platform to support further US and Japanese regulatory studies.”

Ceroflo’s EIIS investment is being managed by DHKN, an accounting firm with more than 15 years’ experience in managing tax-based EIIS investments. DHKN will host a few final online investor presentations over the coming weeks where you can learn more about the opportunity.

“DHKN is delighted to manage this EIIS investment round on behalf of Ceroflo. The most important ingredient for success is the quality of the people behind the business and there is no doubt that there is a world-class team of medtech pioneers behind Ceroflo,” says Mark Gibbs, corporate finance partner with DHKN.

For more information or to secure one of the remaining places at a presentation, contact Mark Gibbs at mgibbs@dhkn.ie or 091 782020. For more information, visit www.ceroflo.com