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Monteris Medical raises $7.8 million

  • Article by: PATRICK KENNEDY
  • Star Tribune
  • January 7, 2013 - 8:49 PM

Monteris Medical has closed on a $7.8 million round of venture capital to help commercialize its treatment system for hard-to-reach brain tumors, the Plymouth-based company said Monday.

The latest round of financing has increased the company's total capital raised in 2012 to nearly $16 million. The company will use proceeds of the offering to commercialize its NeuroBlate System in the North American neurosurgery market.

Monteris Medical, formed in 1999, is a privately held medical device company that's developing an MRI-guided, laser-based system to treat difficult-to-reach brain tumors.

The latest round of financing was led by the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and included the Southwest Michigan First (SWMF) Life Science Fund and several independent parties.

"I consider the support shown by our investors to be a vote of confidence and evidence that we met milestones set during our previous financing," said John Schellhorn, president and CEO of Monteris, in a statement. "We are proud of our team. They are working extremely hard to deliver a new version of the NeuroBlate System to our customers. The objectives of the new version, which is currently being reviewed by FDA, are to reduce treatment times, provide better planning tools, be easier to use and serve as a platform for ongoing development."

Gary Bantle, a partner of BDC Health Venture Fund, said in the statement: "Monteris has all of the key ingredients in place to be successful: a technology that works, a strong management team, regulatory clearance of key products and reimbursement for hospitals."

The largest shareholders of privately held Monteris Medical are Canadian and U.S. venture capital funds. The company recently moved its headquarters from Winnipeg to Plymouth.

Dan Carr, CEO of the Collaborative -- a Minnesota organization serving emerging companies, investors and entrepreneurs -- says the med-tech area has been a tough investment environment over the past couple of years because of increasing economic and regulatory hurdles. But if Monteris is looking to execute a growth strategy in the med-tech area, Carr added, there are few better places than the Minneapolis/St. Paul area in which to do it.

The area is a hub of resources for emerging medical device companies, from the University of Minnesota to legal and professional resources with experience getting devices through the regulatory process. "It's a good sign for the ... Minnesota med-tech community," Carr said.

At $7.8 million, Monteris' financing would be a little smaller than the average venture capital deal at Minnesota companies in 2012 -- but larger than the average deal in 2011 and 2010. During the first three quarters of 2012, 18 venture capital deals in Minnesota attracted $203 million, for an average deal of $11.3 million. The average sized deals in 2011 and 2010 was $5.9 million and $4.8 million, respectively. The funding numbers are from the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree Report based on data from Thomson Reuters.

Patrick Kennedy • 612-673-7926

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