Optical healthcare firm eyes growth on back of funding boost

A Glasgow-based optical healthcare disruptor that enables opticians to test patients remotely has growth in its sights after seeing its “cutting-edge” technology attract a US investor.

The IbisVision platform allows optical professionals to remotely examine eyes. Picture: contributed.
The IbisVision platform allows optical professionals to remotely examine eyes. Picture: contributed.

IbisVision has completed a round of capital-raising that it says will allow it to expand its premises, workforce and customer base in the coming year.

The company, which has received support from the Scottish Investment Bank and Scottish Enterprise, has now added Miami-based Compiler Venture Capital as one of its main investors, bolstering its prospects in the US optical health market. Compiler says it has many years of experience within the optical sector, having helped develop and then sell For Eyes, a retail optician business with 150 locations across the US.

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IbisVision has also received funding in the form of two awards from Innovate UK, a government agency established to identify and accelerate the most innovative business ideas with the greatest potential.

The firm says it is 'both hugely disruptive and additive' to the optical healthcare space. Picture: contributed.
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It said the capital boost will allow the business to expand rapidly in 2021, including taking on new heads of marketing and US sales.

The firm is also moving into new premises and is completing distribution agreements to cover the UK. The funding will allow the business to target growth areas such as clinician-led remote examination and disease monitoring.

IbisVision added that while its technology predates the Covid pandemic, its availability could not have come at a “more propitious” time. Its platform allows optical professionals to remotely examine eyes, allowing for appointments, assessments, prescriptions and diagnosis of conditions such as glaucoma.

Commercial director Melville Berwick said: “Any time you get technology as groundbreaking as this, especially in healthcare, you have to be enthusiastic about sharing it widely so as to make a real difference to people's lives.

“Our technology means many more people will be able to be assessed by skilled opticians, and our opticians will not only be able to attract more business and do so more efficiently and at lower cost, but also more successfully take preventative and corrective measures for their individual patients.”

IbisVision was founded in 2014 by former eye surgeon Dr Blair Donaldson, an honorary consultant at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and honorary senior lecturer at Aberdeen University.

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