American biotechnology company BiOptix has announced the successful close of a second round of financing led by a most unusual investor: the Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies. RUSNANO, which provided USD 4.5 million of the USD 9 million series B round, was joined by Peierls Foundation, Boulder Ventures, and a handful of private investors. The deal is RUSNANO’s second investment abroad, but its first in an American-owned entity.
The funding and relationship with RUSNANO will allow BiOptix to expand into new markets, including the establishment of a Russian subsidiary to be named BiOptix Nanoprom LLC.
Originally established as AlphaSniffer in 2003, BiOptix is a manufacturer of biosensor technology which enables researchers and scientists to detect various chemical and biological substances in trace amounts, all with minimal human handling. Among the agents that can be detected are proteins, bacteria, nucleic acids, viruses, and anti-bodies. The technology holds much promise for the early detection of some cancers.
BiOptix technology was developed by Dr. John Hall of the University of Colorado. Hall won the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize for physics.
RUSNANO was established by the Russian government in 2007 to support the development of innovative nanotechnologies in that country. The main goal of RUSNANO is to encourage growth in the Russian nanotechnology sector in the hope of achieving annual sales of RU 900 billion by the year 2015. RUSNANO will achieve that goal by investing in appropriate projects that are likely to make a significant financial impact and social contribution. 2009 net income for the corporation was in excess of RU 11 billion.