Two Belgian investment managers from Noshaq have launched White Fund, a new €20 million private equity fund dedicated to early-stage medtech startups, particularly Belgian companies developing medical devices. The fund aims to raise an additional €10 million over the next few months.
Joanna Tyrekidis and Benoit Fellin announced the medtech fund has reached its first close of €20 million and will focus on ten early-stage Belgian startups. The goal is not only to inject more funding into medical device research or to strengthen the Belgian medtech ecosystem, but also to provide pointed support and guidance in a highly-regulated sector that has specific challenges and barriers to market entry. “Medtech companies have their own life cycles and economic realities, including challenges, particularly of a regulatory nature, which must be considered at a very early stage, as soon as the project is structured,” said Tyrekidis and Fellin. “In addition to finance, we therefore wanted to develop a project that responds more effectively to identified weaknesses, which are generally shared by these companies and at this stage of development.” So far White Fund has laid out its own structure. Selected startups must at least have a proof of concept for their technology and signs of market traction. The fund plans to take on two or three projects per year for the next five years, with €2-3 million allocated to each startup across a few rounds of financing. Finally the exit target is around five to seven years. Right now about fifteen projects are being considered in the fields of medical imaging, cardiology and even the detection of respiratory problems. The two founders began raising funds in October 2018, securing investments from Marc Nolet, SFPI-FPIM, Invest For Jobs, finance&invest.brussels, Noshaq, Ogeo Fund, Solidaris and CHU de Liège. The board of directors is currently under construction and will be chaired by an independent director with significant healthcare experience.