Healthcare virtual reality start-up secures major investment in Wales

Funding | Technology | Wales

A Welsh start-up that develops virtual reality technology for healthcare has secured a major investment.

A group of Wales-based angel investors and the Development Bank of Wales has closed an equity deal with Rescape Innovation worth £480,000 which will help the company invest in new technology, export and develop new products to support patient recovery and rehabilitation.

The deal has brought together ten high-profile investors from a range of sectors who all believe in the benefits of virtual reality and its capability to support patients and the healthcare system.

The deal was led by South Wales based investor Andrew Diplock, with support from Angels Invest Wales, part of the Development Bank of Wales, Geldards and Capital Law. Andrew and the syndicate of investors secured match funding from the £8m Wales Angel Co-investment Fund.

Andrew Diplock, Lead Investor said: “The future is exciting for Rescape and with the new funding, the business will be able to make the right investment at the right time with innovative technology in the developing healthcare sector.

“I was pleased to be able to introduce this South Wales based business to a group of leading and experienced businesspeople– they all agreed to back the exciting future development of this company. I focus my investment activity on high growth potential South Wales-based businesses. Rescape Innovation certainly fits the bill and I look forward to working with the management team in the years to come.”

It was thanks to the Accelerated Growth Programme (AGP) funded by Welsh Government and the European Regional Development Fund that the Welsh business was given the early support it needed to establish its product in Wales.

Rescape Innovation, based in Cardiff, works to develop virtual reality products that help patients deal with pain, rehabilitation, stress and anxiety by distracting the brain. The distraction therapy technology allows the patient to be immersed in a different reality, helping the brain to reduce pain and ease the feelings of anxiety.

Recent studies demonstrate that the cost of adolescent pain is nearly £4billion per year, with up to 28 million people in Britain living with chronic pain according to recent estimations.

Up until now, cases are usually treated with a prescription of pain killers- putting strain on NHS budgets as well as on patients who rely on them.

Rescape aims to address not only the prescription and patient experience but also the longer-term health economic benefits of immersive technology.

Steve Holt, Director of Angels Invest Wales said: “We are delighted to support the development of Rescape Innovation with match funding of £207,500 through the Wales Angel Co-investment Fund. This fund is now successfully encouraging new angel syndicates to come together to invest in Welsh businesses.

“The Rescape investment syndicate has brought ten angel investors together and collectively they’ll bring a wealth of experience to the development of the business.”

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