NuVision™ is a spin-out company from the University of Nottingham, incorporated July 2014. The company was established to commercialise high quality and affordable biotherapies for treating ‘front of the eye’ disease and trauma.
The founder of NuVision™, Dr Andrew Hopkinson is the Principal Research Fellow in Academic Ophthalmology within the Division of Clinical Neuroscience at the University of Nottingham.
The business is co-owned by the founders, Dr Andrew Hopkinson (CEO), Professor Harminder Dua (Clinical Director), the directors Mr Bryan Lister (COO), Dr Helen Shaw (Chairman) and the University of Nottingham.
Sector: Life Science
Company Website: http://www.nu-vision.co.uk/
Context / Challenge:
NuVision participated in NBG Programme in 2014 where was coached by the BizDonut founder Viktor Todorov.
NuVision had received £2m in grant funding and developed an “off the shelf” product based on amniotic membrane, aimed at overcoming the problems faced by Ophthalmic surgeons treating sever chronic corneal injuries. Despite this addressing an unmet need in surgical practice, and having both a business plan and pitch presentation, Andy had pitched to the Universities Angel group on two occasions and at a Pitch Perfect event, and received no significant interest.
What was provided through the programme:
“The biggest thing that the programme has given me is the competence and confidence to believe in myself in business circles, such as pitching to a room full of investors” Andy Hopkinson. “It’s difficult to be more specific, as there is so much learnt about business and how the business world operates ,and learnt in a way that makes you internalise and start using immediately, that it’s difficult to recall exactly what was learnt!” .“I know that I can happily pitch to investors and others now, and deal with their questions, and that is because of the programme”.
What they did:
Worked to confirm the unmet need by making explicit all assumptions inherent in business plan, and testing these in customer discovery. Then moving on to test assumptions in manufacturing, supply chain, sales channels etc. He validated his assumptions on the clinical need and cost effectiveness, and also the ability to directly sale to the surgeons with budget holder consultation. The latter is unusual, and in this particular case just happens to be so! As Andy admitted, he was right, but by luck rather than judgement!
A business model and financial model were constructed from bottom up, and the business plan re-written, including the validation of his key assumptions. Extensive pitch training prepared for an introduction by us to some investors and for him to pitch a third time to the University Angel group. This time he was the most approached afterwards of all the companies pitching and entered detailed discussions with one investor.
He also entered discussions and now exclusivity with a second VC (NbG introduced), and expects to close a funding round for £380,000 in next 2 weeks! Ed- now secured.
Further, obtained NTech funding for £75,000, and recently two further grants: Innovate UK & BioMedical Catalyst totalling £175,000.
“The biggest thing that the programme has given me is the competence and confidence to believe in myself in business circles, such as pitching to a room full of investors”
– Andy Hopkinson –
– CEO, NuVision –