University of Michigan's Wolverine Venture Fund Participates in $21 Million Series B Financing of NeuMoDX
Student-led fund partners with leading strategic investors and VCs on deal with medical diagnostics company
ANN ARBOR, Mich., April 1, 2014-- The Wolverine Venture Fund, managed by students at The Samuel Zell & Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, today announced it has invested in NeuMoDx Molecular, Inc., a privately held diagnostics company developing a new platform for high throughput, low cost molecular testing. The $21 million Series B round of financing was led by Pfizer Ventures and also included investments from Baird Capital, Venture Investors and existing investor Arboretum Ventures. The Wolverine Venture Fund also participated in NeuMoDx' $5 million Series A financing round in 2012.
This financing will be used to fund development of the NeuMoDx 500 Molecular IVD System, a fully automated, random access platform capable of performing RNA and DNA-based assays. In addition to completing platform development, this funding will enable the company to pursue clinical trials and regulatory approvals for the system's first assays.
Faculty Managing Director, Prof. Erik Gordon, said the students performed professional-level follow-up due diligence on the technical and market adoption aspects of the investment, and concluded that it fit the Fund's criteria for growth and return on investment. Gordon added, "The students as a group bring to the table broad array of expertise, including scientific, engineering, marketing, clinical and financial experience."
The $5.5 million Wolverine Venture Fund was the country's first student-led venture fund and serves as a shining example of the Institute's action-based approach to entrepreneurial education. The Fund's student members seek, screen and negotiate investments and develop significant experience in these areas - and in working with VCs and entrepreneurs. Since its inception, the Wolverine Venture Fund has invested more than three dozen companies in a wide range of innovative industries such as information technology, life sciences and alternative energy. A team of students drove the investment in ArborMetrix, including sourcing the deal and conducting all necessary due diligence, negotiation and collaboration with other investors.
"Students from the Wolverine Venture Fund have been a valuable addition to the strategic investment team for NeuMoDx Molecular, and we are delighted they are part of our Series B," stated Jeff Williams, Founder and CEO of NeuMoDx. "My experience working with the University of Michigan and the Wolverine Venture Fund goes beyond NeuMoDX. Like the student teams who participated in funding my prior company HandyLab, our current Wolverine Venture Fund team represents a broad cross-section of business expertise providing valuable perspective as we continue with development, clinical trials and approvals."
About the Stephen M. Ross School of Business
The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan is a vibrant and distinctive learning community grounded in the principle that business can be an extraordinary vehicle for positive change in today's dynamic global economy. The Ross School of Business mission is to develop leaders who make a positive difference in the world. Through thought and action, members of the Ross community drive change and innovation that improves business and society.
Ross is consistently ranked among the world's leading business schools. Academic degree programs include the MBA, Part-time MBA (Evening and Weekend formats), Executive MBA, Global MBA, Master of Accounting, Master of Supply Chain Management, Master of Entrepreneurship, Master of Management, BBA, and PhD. In addition, the school delivers open-enrollment and custom executive education programs targeting general management, leadership development, and strategic human resource management.
About the Samuel Zell & Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies
The Institute and its Center for Venture Capital and Private Equity Finance bring together a potent mix of knowledge, experience and opportunities from the front lines of entrepreneurship and alternative investments. The student learning experience is further enhanced through internships, entrepreneurial clubs and events that serve to provide viable networks and engage the business community. The School's three student-led investment funds, with over $6.5M under management, immerse students in the business assessment and investment process. Founding Board Members include Samuel Zell, Chairman of Equity Group Investments and Eugene Applebaum, Founder of Arbor Drugs, Inc. For more information, visit the Institute at www.zli.bus.umich.edu.
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