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17 February, 2011 - 14:23 By Staff Reporter

£12m to boost Vantix commercialisation


Cambs-based biosensor specialist Vantix Ltd – formerly Universal Sensors – is to receive at least £12 million investment to commercialise a raft of market-leading products.

It will benefit from the major investment following a significant deal by Sensortec – its New Zealand parent company – and also from the injection of capital from existing funds.

Sensortec has raised substantial but undisclosed funds from the sale of Cawood Ltd, its successful agricultural contract testing business, in a management buyout.

Chairman Richard Wardle told Business Weekly: “The investment will be no less than £12m and comprises some proceeds from the Cawood deal and capital from existing funds. Of that investment total, £8.5m is the money we are currently raising while £3.5m is the net monies that have or will be received from Cawood sale.

“We have great confidence in the universal potential of the Vantix product range – hence the decision to commit such substantial resources to the commercialisation process.”

Sensortec has developed Cawood over the last eight years through the merger of several small testing laboratories and has achieved consistent year-on-year sales growth.

Wardle added: “The management buyout of Cawood is the start of an exciting new chapter for both companies. It gives Cawood the opportunity to continue its expansion and Sensortec the ability to bring a series of new products to market via its biosensor business, which itself is growing rapidly.

“The investment from this transaction will support further development of a series of new product platforms, including the VantixTM Point-of-Care for medical diagnostics and the VantixTM Mobile system for the detection of hospital superbugs, funded in part through the Department of Health's Small Business Research Initiative.

“Vantix Ltd will be launching a series of new Vantix products throughout 2011 – including a rapid portable test for the detection of antibiotics in animal feed for the growing agritech mobile testing market.”

The name change from Universal to Vantix was part of the commercialisation process and synergises the branding of the company with that of its products.

Vantix Limited has developed a biosensor platform for the detection of a range of contaminants, toxins and disease markers in complex aqueous based samples.

The VantixTM biosensors are sensitive, fast and versatile so that they can be used with existing assays and automated in a range of product platforms. We focus on developing product systems which move tests out of the laboratory and to the point-of-care or point-of-use.

The VantixTM product range includes: a laboratory research instrument (Vantix Research) for the development of new methods, a table-top Point-of-Care system in development for use in hospitals and in the community (VantixTM Point-of-Care) and a future mobile system for Point-of-Use (VantixTM Mobile).

Vantix Ltd enters into collaborations and partnerships to apply its platform technology in vertical

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