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UgenTec Raises $1.4M from Investors, Government Agency

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Belgian software startup UgenTec has received more than €1 million (about $1.06) in venture capital funding from a group of Belgian investors, and an additional €250,000 ($265,000) in research funds from the IWT, a Belgium government agency for Innovation by Science and Technology.

The company has also received a €100,000 ($106,000) loan from LRM, a Belgian investment company.

The list of investors includes Annie Vereecken, former CEO of MedHold (now part of Sonic Healthcare), Cartagenia CEO Herman Verrelst, and a KULeuven investment group Bart De Moor.

Wouter Uten, CEO of UgenTec, said that the company will use the funds to develop FastFinder, its laboratory software for automated PCR-based DNA analysis. FastFinder is currently being used by several diagnostic laboratories in Benelux, Germany, and France, and an additional 50 European laboratories will implement the solution this year, according to the company.

UgenTec also plans to develop new functionality for its software and will recruit extra developers as well as biotechnicians for various roles. It has already added three new employees to its existing eight-person staff, and intends to hire additional talent to bring its total workforce to 15 people.

The funds will also support UgenTec's international expansion plans. "We want to expand pan-European in the short term, and also prepare for commercializing FastFinder in the US market in the next 18 months" pending approval from the US Food and Drug Administration, Uten said.