GE Capital and GE Healthcare, the financial services and healthcare divisions of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), announced today an investment in NanoString Technologies, Inc., a privately held provider of life science tools for translational research and developer of molecular diagnostics. The investment is being made through the GE healthymagination Fund, an equity fund that makes investments in highly promising healthcare technology companies.
The investment is aligned with GE Healthcare’s commitment to spend $1B in new oncology research & development over the next five years, as well as GE’s broader healthymagination initiative, which focuses on reducing cost, increasing access and improving quality in healthcare. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
NanoString’s instrument platform, the nCounter® Analysis System, is a fully automated platform for digital gene expression and other applications requiring the detection and counting of single molecules. Academic and industry researchers use the nCounter for a variety of translational medicine applications, including biomarker discovery & validation.
A diagnostic version of the nCounter is being developed by NanoString for use in pathology and hospital laboratories worldwide. Oncology will be the immediate area of clinical focus for NanoString and they are currently investing in the development and clinical validation of proprietary diagnostic tests that aim to reduce cost and improve the overall quality of cancer care. NanoString’s distributed diagnostic approach has the potential to bring molecular pathology to parts of the world in which it has been previously unavailable.
”GE Healthcare shares our commitment to providing cancer patients and their physicians worldwide with information that enables them to individualize treatment,” said Brad Gray, President and CEO of NanoString Technologies. “We are delighted that our technology and business model have captured GE’s attention and support.”
The investment in NanoString reflects GE Healthcare’s continuing interest in life science tools, medical diagnostics solutions and the growing area of personalized medicine. As an investor, GE Healthcare will look for various ways to work with NanoString that complement the strategic objectives of its healthymagination initiative. GE Healthcare will not gain rights to NanoString’s technology or products as part of the investment.
“NanoString is a good strategic fit with GE Healthcare, given our common focus on oncology,” said Pascale Witz, President & CEO of GE Healthcare’s Medical Diagnostics business. “GE Healthcare’s growing personalized medicine portfolio encompasses a wide range of diagnostic tools and solutions. We believe NanoString’s nCounter system gives researchers the potential to take basic biomarker discoveries into the clinic. We look forward to exploring ways to collaborate with the NanoString team.”
The GE healthymagination Fund is part of GE’s $6 billion healthymagination initiative, a global commitment to deliver better healthcare to more people at lower cost. The Fund targets three broad areas for investment:
• Broad-based Diagnostics, including imaging, home health, patient monitoring, molecular diagnostics, pathology, novel imaging agents and other technologies for disease diagnosis;
• Healthcare Information Technology, including electronic medical records, clinical information systems, healthcare information exchanges and value-added data services;
• Life Sciences, including tools for drug discovery and biomedical research, and technologies for manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals and vaccines.
The Fund draws on capabilities from across GE Healthcare, GE Capital and GE Global Research, and has a global footprint. For further information about the fund, visit healthymaginationfund.com/.
“NanoString’s platform presents great promise for researchers to be able to discover and validate the biomarkers of disease, particularly cancer,” said GE Vice President and GE Healthcare Chief Technology Officer Mike Harsh. “This investment aligns with our strategy to fund innovations focused on reducing cost, increasing access and improving quality in healthcare.”
The nCounter system is currently available for research use only.
About GE Healthcare
GE Healthcare (gehealthcare.com) provides transformational medical technologies and services that are shaping a new age of patient care. Our broad expertise in medical imaging and information technologies, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems, drug discovery, biopharmaceutical manufacturing technologies, performance improvement and performance solutions services help our customers to deliver better care to more people around the world at a lower cost. In addition, we partner with healthcare leaders, striving to leverage the global policy change necessary to implement a successful shift to sustainable healthcare systems.
Our “healthymagination” vision for the future invites the world to join us on our journey as we continuously develop innovations focused on reducing costs, increasing access and improving quality around the world. Headquartered in the United Kingdom, GE Healthcare is a unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE). Worldwide, GE Healthcare employees are committed to serving healthcare professionals and their patients in more than 100 countries.
About GE Capital, Equity
GE Capital, Equity (gecapital.com) is GE's private equity investment group, investing in growth companies, buyouts and special situations. Visit geequity.com. GE Capital offers consumers and businesses around the globe an array of financial products and services. Follow company news via Twitter (@GECapital).
About NanoString Technologies
NanoString Technologies is a privately held provider of life science tools for translational research and developer of molecular diagnostics. The company’s nCounter® Analysis System is the first and only technology platform to deliver highly multiplexed, direct profiling of individual molecules in a single reaction without amplification. The nCounter Analysis System offers a cost-effective way to easily profile hundreds of gene transcripts, copy number variations, or miRNAs simultaneously with high sensitivity and precision. The company’s technology enables a wide variety of basic research and translational medicine applications, including biomarker discovery and validation. NanoString is also developing the technology for use in molecular diagnostics.
Ned Reynolds, GE Capital Americas
P: +1 (203) 229 5717 / E: ned.reynolds[.]ge.com.
Marshall Poindexter, GE Healthcare
P: +1 (262) 853-2022 / E: marshall.poindexter[.]ge.com.