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Netscientific PLC: THE INVESTMENT CASE

NetScientific revitalised by focus on core portfolio

The group has ambitions to strengthen its transatlantic focus through organic and strategic growth
Blood test
INVESTMENT OVERVIEW: NSCI The Big Picture
The VTX-1 instrument and the integrated microfluidic cartridge moved from feasibility into late stage development

Pre-revenue healthcare intellectual property (IP) commercialisation group NetScientific PLC (LON:NSCI) said its core portfolio companies made excellent progress in the first half of 2016.

The big four players in NetScientific’s roster are: Wanda, Vortex Biosciences, Glycotest and ProAxsis.

Wanda

Wanda is a San Francisco-based digital health company focused on reducing hospitalisation risk and improving the quality of life for those suffering chronic conditions.

It has developed a way to digitally monitor people with congestive heart failure and other chronic conditions, so that specialists can monitor risk and lower readmissions. The latter is significant because in the US the system means hospitals have to pay when patents are discharged then re-admitted.

During the reporting period it signed a contract with a leading US high-tech home nursing and therapy services agency, Health Resource Solutions (HRS), for the use of its chronic condition management product. HRS looks after more than 1,000 patients per month helping them to have a higher quality of life at home rather than in hospitals. The agreement is demonstrating early signs of commercial success, NetScientific said.

In addition, Wanda signed a collaborative agreement with the fifth largest health provider organisation in the US, Dignity Health, to launch its new oncology platform, Oncoverse. The platform allows clinicians to work together to establish the most effective treatment plan and helps to reduce administration costs.

Post-reporting period Wanda has broadened its commercialisation strategy to include a direct-to-consumer offering with the launch of myWanda, the only mobile application specifically aimed at empowering women to improve the health of their hearts.

The group said the app is already attracting interest from large employers.

Vortex Biosciences

Vortex Biosciences is a US based cancer diagnostic company, developing a novel liquid biopsy automated instrument, VTX-1, and microfluidic cartridge for the isolation of circulating tumour cells from whole blood without the need for any pre-processing of the blood.

In the first half of 2016, the VTX-1 instrument and the integrated microfluidic cartridge moved from feasibility into late stage development. The aim is for a commercial launch into the clinical research market in the first quarter of next year.

Glycotest

Glycotest is a US-based liver diagnostics company seeking to commercialise new and unique blood tests for life threatening liver cancers and fibrosis-cirrhosis with exclusive worldwide rights to more than 50 patent-protected serum protein biomarkers.

A clinical study of its lead product, HCC Panel, demonstrated the product’s ability to detect early-stage liver cancer significantly better than the alpha-fetoprotein blood test, which is the current standard in healthcare.

ProAxsis

ProAxsis is a Northern Ireland-based medical diagnostics company, developing a range of laboratory assays and point-of-care tests designed for the capture, detection and measurement of active protease biomarkers of diseases.

NetScientific said ProAxsis continued to make excellent progress in the first half of the year with its ProteaseTag Active Neutrophil Elatase Immunoassay, which was increasingly being used by academic research centres and pharmaceutical companies focused on respiration issues.

Management comment

"NetScientific has undergone a transformation under the leadership of François Martelet, with the rationalisation of the portfolio and restructuring of the management team, resulting in a streamlined group focused on IP commercialisation,” said Sir Richard Sykes, executive chairman of NetScientific, adding that the portfolio focus has been totally revitalised.

Chief executive Martelet said: "During the period I am delighted to say that four of our core portfolio companies made significant operational and development progress, positioning themselves optimally to initiate external financing rounds with the goal of providing significant value inflection points upon completion."

The group has ambitions to strengthen its transatlantic focus through organic and strategic growth, actively managing the portfolio and replenishing the pipeline with disruptive chronic disease opportunities, it said.

Delivering near-term milestones remains a focus with key deliverables including: completing external financing for Wanda/Glycotest, a product launch for Vortex and ProAxsis achieving a CE mark for its NEATstik point-of-care device.

Numbers are not particularly meaningful for a company at this stage of development, but for the record revenue in the first half of 2016 grew to £359,243 from £55,000 the year before, while the loss before tax widened to £6.13mln from £4.39mln.

Available cash at the end of June had diminished to £15.9mln from £23.2mln at the end of 2015.

 

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