Owkin Closes A New Venture Round Led By F-Prime Capital And Eight Roads Ventures; Appoints Health Tech Veteran Parker Moss As Chief Business Officer

Investment will expand Owkin’s partner network worldwide and deploy its flagship machine learning platform to augment medical research

NEW YORK, March 07, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Owkin, a company which builds machine learning technologies and infrastructure to enable breakthrough medical research, today announced a funding round led by F-Prime Capital and Eight Roads Ventures. The round was joined by GV, Cathay Innovation and NJF Capital.

In addition, Owkin has appointed F-Prime Capital/Eight Roads Entrepreneur-in-Residence Parker Moss as Chief Business Officer. Parker will work to strengthen Owkin’s partnerships with hospitals, academic centers, and pharmaceutical and biotech companies. He brings deep experience as a senior executive in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) and before that in the telecoms industry. Parker spent five years working with the NHS including as CTO of Virgin Care, the largest UK provider of NHS community services, and as Head of Digital Strategy and Transformation at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, Europe’s largest specialist children’s hospital. 

Founded in 2016, Owkin builds machine learning technologies to enable medical and scientific discoveries. These algorithms support drug development by predicting treatment outcomes and disease evolution. Owkin interprets the model’s features and variables to discover multimodal biomarkers and works with clinicians to biologically validate these new biomarkers. Owkin’s network is the first at-scale solution that enables federated learning for the healthcare industry, allowing researchers to train predictive models on heterogeneous real-world data while preserving patient privacy. Owkin’s combination of life science and machine learning expertise makes drug discovery and clinical trial design more targeted and cost effective. The predictive models are implemented in clinical trials through analysis enrichment, surrogate endpoints, patient stratification, patient selection, and high-value subgroup identification. The impact is better treatments for patients, sooner and at lower cost.

“Understanding the ‘ground truth’ of disease biology is the key to improving survival and reducing treatment toxicity for some of our most complex and devastating diseases… that ‘truth’ lies within the study of human data,” said Parker Moss, at Owkin. “I am proud to be joining Owkin’s world class team of clinicians, life scientists, data scientists and engineers who have created a new model of collaboration between the pharmaceutical industry and the healthcare sector. By analyzing human data through our federated network of hospitals, we will accelerate the pace of research, protect patient privacy by never taking data out of the hospital, and share the rewards of our research with our hospitals partners.”

“Parker has rich experience innovating in the healthcare industry, and having lived for many years as a caretaker on a cancer ward, he leads with a patient-centric approach. Like all of us at Owkin, he is on a mission to break data silos and create universal access to intelligence trained on real-world data. This is what medical research needs today,” said Thomas Clozel M.D., co-founder and CEO of Owkin. “F-Prime Capital and Eight Roads Ventures bring an impressive combined track record in healthcare innovation with investments in some of the world’s most exciting disruptive companies and technologies.”

“It is hard to extract value from networks of real-world data while preserving patient privacy and security,” said Alex Pasteur, Partner at F-Prime Capital who joined Owkin’s board at this financing. “Owkin’s federated learning approach allows patient data to stay entirely with the provider, a unique approach in healthcare data science.”

“Owkin has a world-class team with a rare combination of expertise in federated AI, bioinformatics and life sciences,” said Davor Hebel, Managing Partner and Head of Europe Ventures at Eight Roads. “Their knowledge and ambition are already delivering breakthrough insights for pharmaceutical companies and hospitals; they are a great example of a leading global company scaling up from Europe.”

This latest round of funding builds on a year of momentum and growth for Owkin. Former Novartis Oncology CEO, Bruno Strigini, joined as Chairman of the company’s Board of Directors. Former CIO of the Pasteur Institute, Michaël Pressigout, joined the executive team. This venture round follows Owkin’s January 2018 Series A round, led by Otium Venture with GV, Cathay Innovation, and NJF Capital.

About Owkin
Owkin builds machine learning technologies and infrastructure to augment medical research and enable scientific discoveries. Owkin empowers researchers to turn real-world patient data into predictive models. This AI boosts research capabilities for physicians and the pharmaceutical industry, improving patient treatment, drug discovery, and development. Owkin is pioneering federated and transfer learning technologies in healthcare to build collective intelligence from distributed data at scale while preserving privacy and security. Owkin partners with leading institutions in Europe and the US. For more information, please visit www.owkin.com and follow @OWKINscience on Twitter.
owkin@launchsquad.com | 415-625-8555

About F-Prime Capital Partners
F-Prime Capital Partners is a global venture capital firm investing in life sciences, healthcare, and technology. Since 1969, F-Prime has worked closely with entrepreneurs and academics to create innovative solutions to some of the world's most significant challenges in healthcare and technology. For more information, please visit www.fprimecapital.com.

About Eight Roads Ventures
Eight Roads Ventures is a global venture capital firm that helps entrepreneurs scale. In the past ten years the Eight Roads ecosystem has invested almost $6bn globally into growing companies. Its near 50-year history of investing includes partnerships with companies such as Alibaba, AppsFlyer, Compte Nickel, Cúram, Future Advisor, InnoGames, iPipeline, Kensho, Letgo, Made.com, Neo4j, Nuance, Ping Identity, Prosper, Treatwell, Recurly, Wallapop and Xoom. For more information, please visit www.eightroads.com.