FluidAI Medical announces $15-million Series A for AI-driven postoperative monitor

Series A round comes almost exactly one year after rebranding from NERv Technology.

Kitchener-Waterloo healthtech startup FluidAI Medical has announced it raised a $15-million USD ($20-million CAD) Series A round for its AI-driven postoperative monitoring platform.

The Series A round was led by SOSV and Graphene Ventures, with participation from Boutique Venture Partners, Threshold Impact, Cur8 Capital, Leva Capital, Kyto Technology & Life Science Inc., Juno Pharmaceuticals, and SLS Partnering.

The company says a number of angels, funds, and government funding organizations also participated. The all-primary, mostly equity round also featured non-dilutive funding from government grants such as one from the Ontario Together Fund. As a result of its investment, Graphene Ventures retained a seat on FluidAI’s board.

FluidAI announced the funding on Oct. 10, almost exactly one-year after it rebranded away from NERv Technology on Oct. 11, 2022, to lean into an identity as an AI-based healthtech solution. The company said the timing of the Series A round announcement is not related to the rebrand anniversary.

“FluidAI reflects our evolution from a pure MedTech company to a hybrid; combining the state of the art of nanotechnology sensing, hardware, ML/AI & cloud,” FluidAI wrote in a LinkedIn post following the name change.

The timing of this Series A announcement reflects growing Interest in AI-based healthtech solutions in recent weeks, with Scale AI and Alberta Innovates committing a combined $29 million to the area.

FluidAI’s product operates in post-surgery care, monitoring for side effects such as anastomotic leaks. These occur after surgery when there’s a connection (anastomosis) between two parts of the digestive tract. A leak from this connection can lead to serious complications, including sepsis (blood infection) and death.

FluidAI says its Stream platform uses advanced sensors and an AI-driven algorithm that may prompt surgeons to identify these leaks earlier.

RELATED: NERv Technology wins 2019 Entrepreneurship World Cup global finals

FluidAI (then NERv) was co-founded in 2014 by CEO Youssef Helwa and COO Amr Abdelgawad, two University of Waterloo engineering graduates, with the startup’s executive team also consisting of CTO Abdallah El-Falou.

It went on to raise a $1 million pre-seed round in October 2019 and then won the first place $500,000 USD prize at the 2019 Entrepreneurship World Cup (EWC) global finals in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

RELATED: NERv Technology raises $3.32 million as it prepares to bring medical sensor tech to market

The Series A round co-leaders, SOSV and Graphene Ventures, are return investors, with SOSV returning after leading the company’s $2.65-million USD ($3.32 million CAD) seed round in April 2021 which Graphene Ventures also participated in. FluidAI said it has raised $17.5 million USD to date, but declined to disclose its valuation.

“FluidAI is a perfect example of AI-powered proprietary sensing being developed to save lives,” said Duncan Turner, general partner at SOSV, in a statement. “With FluidAI, surgeons can ensure better clinical outcomes, shorter hospital stays for patients, and cost efficiencies across the healthcare ecosystem.”

FluidAI said the investment will allow it to develop deeper medical record integration, expand into existing and new global markets, grow its team, and introduce AI-driven solutions catering to a broader range of postoperative complications.

UPDATE (10/17/23): This story was updated to note additional information shared by a FluidAI spokesperson.

Feature image courtesy FluidAI.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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