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South Carolina Research Authority takes on new members, awards grants

Life Sciences
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The South Carolina Research Authority has accepted three new member companies and provided grant funding for four others.

All SCRA Member Companies receive coaching, access to experts in SCRA’s Resource Partner Network, eligibility to apply for grant funding, and the potential to be considered for investment from SCRA’s investment affiliate, SC Launch Inc., according to a news release.

BagValet, FRD Accel and Health Evolve Technologies were accepted as SCRA Member Companies.

BagValet LLC is a Charleston-based mobile luggage storage solution provider that aims to assist travelers in bridging the gap between lodging accommodations and flight times by providing daily luggage storage with door-to-door service.

FRD Accel LLC is a Charleston-based life science company that was formed by the Medical University of South Carolina’s Zucker Institute for Innovation Commercialization. Their technology, BabyStrong, consisting of an earpiece and controller, uses vagus nerve stimulation to promote feeding in newborns, especially premature babies, that are having feeding difficulties. The company says the BabyStrong system can eliminate the need for a gastric tube, resulting in earlier discharge from the hospital and reduced stress for the baby and family.

Health Evolve Technologies LLC has been accepted as an SCRA Member Company. The Columbia-based information technology company builds patient-centered technologies that provide comprehensive and simple tools that equip patients and position providers with clinical insights needed for a personalized care experience.

Aravis BioTech, CloseWise, Ortho-Dx, and Sagacity Solutions received new grants totaling $175,000.

Aravis BioTech LLC received a $50,000 Federal Matching Grant. The Greenville-based life science company is developing a medical device implant that will monitor the healing of hip surgery patients. The device informs the provider and the patient about when and how to begin weight-bearing activities. This device is also designed to reduce complications and manage care for insurance purposes.

CloseWise LLC received a $50,000 Acceleration Grant. The Lexington-based information technology company provides a notary database and scheduling software developed for signing agents, signing services, and title and escrow companies in order to digitalize the signing process.

Ortho-Dx Inc. received a $25,000 Project Development Fund Grant. The Hilton Head Island-based life sciences company has developed a wireless sensor system to monitor the stability of surgically placed orthopedic implants utilizing near-field inductive technology.

Sagacity Solutions Inc. received a $50,000 Acceleration Grant. The Greenville-based startup developed a platform that helps venture capital firms request, collect and analyze portfolio company performance data, thereby freeing up team members’ time to make more informed decisions.

Grant funding is made possible, in part, by the Industry Partnership Fund contributions that fuel the state’s innovation economy, according to the news release. Contributors to the IPF receive a dollar-for-dollar state tax credit, which SCRA says makes an easy and effective way to help one of the fastest-growing segments of the South Carolina economy.

Chartered in 1983 by the state, SCRA is a nonprofit that provides funding and support to accelerate the growth of academic startups; high-quality lab and administrative workspaces; facilitation and funding for partnerships between and among industry, startups and academic institutions; assistance and funding for the relocation of technology-based companies to South Carolina; and coaching and funding for startups that may also receive investments from its affiliate, SC Launch Inc.

Reach Ross Norton at [email protected] or 864-642-5229.

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