Olympus Launches Corporate VC Fund to Fuel MedTech Innovation

Deborah Zajac
Nov 12 · 4 min read
Olympus is a MedTech leader in minimally invasive surgery (Image: Shutterstock)

We are proud to announce the launch of Olympus Innovation Ventures and our ongoing work with Olympus to help manage the fund. Below you can read the official press release, which is also published here.

For additional information, check out this article from David Cassack at MedTech Strategist.

-Deborah Zajac

Olympus Innovation Ventures is a new, multi-year investment fund designed to support early and growth startups developing digital, diagnostic, and medical device solutions. Our goal is to advance the detection and treatment of disease and transform the surgery suite.

As one of the leading MedTech innovators over the last 70 years, Olympus has fueled the minimally invasive surgery revolution, detecting and treating over 100 diseases and conditions to improve patient outcomes.

Digital, diagnostic and medical device early and growth-stage companies pioneering innovations in gastroenterology, respiratory, ENT, urology, gynecology, general surgery, or minimally invasive surgery. Olympus seeks to partner with startups by offering clinical and technical expertise, access to healthcare professionals and hospitals, and assistance launching and scaling novel solutions in the global market.

TOKYO, JAPAN, and CENTER VALLEY, PA — November 11, 2021 — Olympus Corporation (Tokyo: 7733), a global leader in medical technology, has announced the establishment of Olympus Innovation Ventures to invest in pioneering startups with innovative technologies that improve clinical outcomes, reduce healthcare costs and enhance the quality of life for patients.

Olympus Innovation Ventures, a fully-owned subsidiary of Olympus Corporation of the Americas, is a venture capital fund focused on startups poised to improve patient outcomes, radically advance the detection and treatment of disease, and transform the surgery suite. The new fund expands upon Olympus’ strategy to strengthen endoscopy and pioneer next-generation tools and procedures for minimally invasive surgery.

Olympus’ venture fund is stage-agnostic, prioritizing early- and growth-stage companies globally with solutions in therapeutic areas including gastroenterology, respiratory, and urology. Olympus has allocated $50 million for initial commitments and follow-on investments in portfolio companies. In addition to capital, Olympus will help its portfolio companies succeed by contributing its clinical and technical expertise, access to healthcare professionals and hospitals, and ability to launch and scale innovative solutions in the global market.

Olympus has been a leader in optical and medical innovation for over 100 years, introducing a mass-produced microscope to Japan in 1919 and the world’s first gastrocamera for practical use in 1950. Olympus’ tools have aided the minimally invasive surgery revolution and have evolved to detect and treat disease. Yasuo Takeuchi, CEO of Olympus Corporation, says “Our investment underscores our commitment to make people’s lives safer, healthier, and more fulfilling. Our goal is for this fund to continue our history of innovation and support our long-term growth and transformation.”

Touchdown Ventures, a firm specializing in corporate venture capital, will help manage the Olympus Innovation Ventures fund. Touchdown will work closely with senior executives of Olympus in all aspects of operating the fund.

“We are excited about what Olympus can bring to entrepreneurs through the company’s technical strengths, industry relationships, vast distribution, and deep subject matter expertise,” noted Scott Lenet, co-founder and President of Touchdown Ventures. “The entire Olympus Innovation Ventures team is working to be the partner of choice for innovators and create a competitive advantage for their startups.”

Nacho Abia, Chief Operating Officer of Olympus Corporation, said “This effort is another way Olympus is demonstrating its commitment to excellence and creating tangible value for providers and patients. We believe we will play a meaningful role in the advancement of minimally invasive care and new ways to detect, monitor, and treat conditions and diseases.”

For more information, please visit http://olympusamerica.com/venture-capital. Olympus Innovation Ventures can be contacted at ventures@olympus.com.

Olympus is passionate about creating customer-driven solutions for the medical, life sciences, and industrial equipment industries. For more than 100 years, Olympus has focused on making people’s lives healthier, safer and more fulfilling by helping to detect, prevent, and treat disease; furthering scientific research; and ensuring public safety. As a leading medical technology company, our Medical business uses innovative capabilities in medical technology, therapeutic intervention, and precision manufacturing to help healthcare professionals deliver diagnostic, therapeutic, and minimally invasive procedures to improve clinical outcomes, reduce overall costs, and enhance the quality of life for patients and their safety. Olympus’ Medical portfolio includes endoscopes, laparoscopes, and video imaging systems, as well as surgical energy devices, system integration solutions, medical services, and a wide range of endotherapy instruments for endoscopic and therapeutic applications. For more information, visit www.olympus-global.com.

Olympus Corporation of the Americas
Christos Monovoukas
Vice President, Global Business Development

Touchdown Ventures
Deborah Zajac
Director, Investments

Source: Olympus Corporation

Deborah Zajac is a Director of Touchdown Ventures, a Registered Investment Adviser that provides “Venture Capital as a Service” to help corporations launch and manage their investment programs.

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