A new medical device supplier which aims to offer UK hospitals the latest innovations from around the world has secured a £650,000 investment from NPIF – Mercia Equity Finance, which is managed by Mercia and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.
North Yorkshire-based GI UK Medical specialises in gastroenterology products and will offer the NHS and private healthcare providers groundbreaking technologies to improve patient care and reduce cost.
The company, which is based in Northallerton, has already struck a number of exclusive deals, including the right to supply a new capsule endoscopy system which can replace the need for an invasive colonoscopy.
The patient simply swallows a capsule containing a tiny video camera and, as the final footage is initially analysed by artificial intelligence, it also saves doctors hours of time in watching the full video.
GI UK has been formed by Andy Fox, Andy Smith and Lawrence Wade who between them have over 50 years of experience in the medical devices industry. The company has already attained its ISO 9001 quality standard that it requires to trade successfully.
The NPIF funding is allowing the company to develop its global supply partnerships, initiate its sales and marketing strategy, recruit two new sales staff and establish itself as a new NHS supplier. As part of the deal the company has appointed leading colorectal surgeon Amyn Haji as non-executive director.
Andy Fox, managing director, said: “The UK has the fastest growing demand for endoscopy procedures in Europe, due to an ageing population and rising obesity rates. Smart products can help the NHS to achieve economies and keep pace with demand. As an independent supplier not tied to any one manufacturer, and a growing, agile business, we are well placed to offer the most innovative products at the right price.”
Mark Wyatt, investment manager with Mercia, said: “Andy and his co-founders are a dynamic team who have built and grown other medical device businesses and have an in-depth knowledge of the sector. They aim to make GI UK Medical the most innovative supplier of its type. I look forward to working with them in this exciting start-up business.”
David Dickson, chair of the Infrastructure and Joint Assets Board of York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “NPIF funding can unlock a great deal of potential and enable good growth. It’s fantastic to see another innovative company based in our patch benefitting from this support.”
Grant Peggie, director at the British Business Bank said: “The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund seeks to boost growth in smaller businesses across the region with finance to support expansion. Funding such as this highlights the important role of external finance as well as the positive impact the NPIF is having on businesses in the North. We would encourage other small businesses seeking to grow to see what funding support is available from NPIF.”
The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.