Fayetteville medical device company Lapovations has received a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. The funding will help further commercialize its first product, AbGrab.
Lapovations originated in the University of Arkansas’ graduate-level New Venture Development program. The UA announced the NSF funding on Wednesday (Sept. 27).
AbGrab is a medical device that is used to lift the abdominal wall at the start of laparoscopic surgery. Existing lifting techniques can be unreliable or invasive, and AbGrab is expected to be more reliable and less invasive, according to a news release.
“Securing non-dilutive funding opportunities has been a crucial part of our capital strategy since inception,” founder and CEO Jared Greer said in the release. “The $1.25 million oversubscribed Series A we closed in January allowed us to maximize the $500,000 in non-dilutive matching funds from Phase IIB.”
According to the release, non-dilutive funding doesn’t require an owner to give up equity in their company. For companies awarded a Phase IIB grant, NSF matches 50% of qualifying third-party investments, with a maximum award of $500,000 per company, according to the release. This Phase IIB award brings the total grant funding secured by Lapovations to $1.725 million since 2019.
“This funding further verifies the commercial opportunity of AbGrab and also validates our ongoing commercial efforts,” Lapovations COO Nhiem Cao said.
Lapovations began a national rollout of AbGrab this spring. Over the next year, the company hopes to continue the buildout of its sales force, with a goal of 125 sales reps. They have also set a goal of having at least 100 laparoscopic surgeons actively using the device by 2024.
For the full UA news release, click here.