hemoTUNE wants to change the blood purification field with a new technology. The idea might work, as hemoTUNE recently won the second stage of Venture Kick and is now preparing for the final stage. We talked with CEO Lukas Langenegger about his startup, the kickers camps and his future plans, before he meet the Venture Kick jury again.
hemoTUNE develops radically new therapy approaches in order to find life-saving solutions for diseases with high unmet medical need. The startup’s first focus is on finding an efficient therapy for patients with sepsis, a devastating condition causing millions of deaths annually. “Our goal is to get into the clinics so that patients can benefit from our innovation” says Lukas Langenegger. Blood purification is an established field, however, it only uses conventional filters so far. „With our approach, we are entering a new territory” says Langenegger. The technology provides a platform for many other applications.
The startup won the second stage of Venture Kick in October 2016. Actually, its co-founders decided to take the entrepreneurial path thanks to another Venture Kick startup, Haelixa, which they met at ETH Zurich and which was part of venture leaders this past summer. They inspired Langenegger and his team: now hemoTUNE is working hard to prepare for the big final of Venture Kick and benefited from the kickers camps – the mentoring part of Venture Kick – to succeed. The process is very demanding and participants get a lot of critical feedback, a “very helpful” step for Langenegger. He now aims at winning the next and final stage of Venture Kick: “It won’t be easy. For us, it is extremely important to grow and progress on the business side. But you have to be top in all areas, in order to win Venture Kick.”
— Venture Kick (@venturekick) 17. November 2016
A worldwide presence as objective
The innovation of hemoTUNE could work in the USA. Langenegger explains: “Although our focus is first on Europe, the US is a very innovative and big market, especially for medical technology. I know Boston from my studies and it is probably the hotspot for life science startups.” But also Asia – and China in particular – is extremely interesting for the startup. “Our goal is therefore to become global one day.”
hemoTUNE is currently working on financing and minimizing risks. This includes the regulatory strategy as well as technical developments to make the blood purification as safe as possible. At the same time, they have to design the manufacturing process according to medical guidelines and optimize their device from animal experiment prototypes for human application. “There is a lot of work ahead of us”, concludes Langenegger.