After getting a grant from German big-pharma company Bayer last year, LineHealth, the company formerly known as PharmAssistant, surprised us again. LineHealt announced on their blog that they secured investment from Bolt, a US-based venture capital company.
Bolt is a VC firm specialized in startups with products that are at the intersection of software and hardware. Founded in 2013, with headquarters in San Francisco and Boston, they are currently managing a $40M fund. This is their second fund, to focus on early stage companies (seed and series A).
This is a match made in heaven for LineHealth that will get a lot of added value from this investment relationship. To build their smart-pillbox and mobile app they needed a partner with expertise developing this type of products: double-sided hardware and software challenges – exactly what Bolt is all about.
Bolt has previously worked with companies such as Ferrari, iRobot, Disney and MakerBot creating, prototyping, testing, programming and building physical products. They will also help LineHealth when the time comes to find a manufacturing partner to mass-produce their product.
Asked by Ship about the next steps on the road to bring LineHealth’s first product – a smart pill box – to mass market and the role this investment will play on the company’s development, Diogo Ortega, LineHealth’s founder and CEO (second from the left in the back row in the picture bellow), said:
“Our functioning prototype is concluded. Right now we will benefit from Bolt’s expertise to make it more ‘producible’ in a large scale. We’re trusting to have several product iterations during the year of 2016. At the same time we will test the prototype with pilot projects that we have already secured. We also have secured clinical test trials for 2016 and the data we’ll get from those trials will trace our “road-to-market” strategy.”
Asked about the future of the team and how they will be organized between Lisbon and the US from now on, Diogo stated that LineHealth will “relocate the business development and hardware development teams to the US and keep software development in Lisbon. It is expected that the US team spends more time there. Opportunities, clients and partners are mostly in the US. But we will always have a presence in Lisbon. It sounds like a great place to keep the software development team and the Lisbon City Hall, together with Beta-i, just offered us 30 years of free office space in Lisbon. We intend to use them and keep our Lisbon branch open for business. It will be our hub for the european market in the future. Lisbon’s location and timezone are perfect to bridge the US and Europe.”
Looks like this healthy crew already “discovered” America. We wonder what they will discover next? Stay tuned.