Aston EyeTech Completes £5m Series A Equity Round and Will Accelerate Product Development

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BIRMINGHAM, United Kingdom—Aston EyeTech, the developer of a next-generation eye diagnostics technology, has completed a £5m Series A funding round, according to an announcement earlier this week.

EyeTech said it will use the funding to accelerate product development and support the 2018 launch of new products, including a range of power-mapping lens meters, binocular autorefractors and a cloud-connected mobile diagnostic platform. The diagnostic platform integrates portable hardware, Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven software systems and large-scale data analytics, according to the announcement.

EyeTech is a 2014 spinout from Aston University's School of Optometry, according to the announcement, and received its first small seed investment in 2014. Since that time, it has “grown from developer to equipment manufacturer to full technology solutions provider,” the announcement noted.

The Series A was led by Mercia Technologies PLC, a U.K. investment group focused on funding innovative technology businesses with high growth potential, according to the announcement. Mercia invested in this funding round alongside a major Asia-based investment syndicate.

“With our cutting-edge technology, great team and supportive shareholders, Aston EyeTech has all the ingredients to seriously disrupt the $200 billion worldwide eye health care industry,” Carl Francis, chief executive, said in the statement. “I find it personally very gratifying to see quality investors such as Mercia and our new Asian partners attracted to the awesome global opportunity we are developing.”

E. Dean Butler, founder of LensCrafters (now part of Luxottica Group SpA) and Vision Express in Europe (now part of GrandVision NV), is a non-executive director on Aston EyeTech’s board. He said, “I have been in this industry for 40 years, and these guys are special. Nobody else can do what they do, and the products and approach they are taking is like nothing this industry has ever seen.”

Francis also noted that the new investment “gives us the financial firepower to really transform the dynamics of the vision health care space. Our products coming out in 2018 will be bold, game-changing, and enhance the way that eye health care is delivered around the world.”