The CRG spin-off company Seqera Labs, a leading provider of data organisation and workflow software in the life sciences, has raised €22 million in series A funding, in addition to the €4.4 million of seed capital raised just a year ago.
Seqera Labs was pivotal in detecting different variants of Covid-19, deploying its technology to discover and track the Alpha, Delta, and Omicron variants of the virus. ‘Tower’, the company’s flagship data analytics platform, has also managed to expand its footprint and has been adopted by more than 150 pharmaceutical and biotech companies including AstraZeneca, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, and Oxford Nanopore.
“Partnering with Addition, alongside our existing investors, Speedinvest and Talis Capital, as well as Boxone and Amino, demonstrates their belief in our direction and our ability to execute. Our ambition is to develop a portfolio of innovative products that positively impact millions of patients worldwide by optimising drug research and discovery costs. We are delighted to be able to count on their support in achieving this goal,” said Evan Floden, co-founder and CEO of Seqera Labs.
Seqera Labs was created as a startup at the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), a BIST centre, in 2018. Its founders, Evan Floden and Paolo Di Tommaso are the creators of Nextflow, the popular open source data workflow and organisation software. Today, Nextflow is used by thousands of organisations worldwide, and is downloaded more than 55,000 times a month.
Seqera Labs continues to build on the Nextflow platform to solve some of the most challenging issues that the life sciences sector faces by allowing organisations to scale their analysis across disparate infrastructure. The core technology enables and simplifies complex deployments of data analysis pipelines in multi-cloud environments, monitors and optimises drug research and discovery costs, accelerating clinical diagnostics and enabling data-driven life sciences solutions.
In parallel to this latest round of funding, Seqera Labs and the CRG have signed an agreement on intellectual property whereby the start-up takes control of assets related to Nextflow technology.
“I am extremely proud that a project started in my lab as a very technological solution to our daily scientific problems could turn in so little time into a major global solution for genomics and beyond. I was especially impressed to see how Seqera Labs skilfully overcame the many hurdles that separate smart innovation from mature products. The prospect of future interaction with such a dynamic company is a now major source of motivation for our students. Seqera Labs is a showcase of successful non-academic careers opened to our PhDs,” explains Dr. Cédric Notredame, group leader at the CRG.
The success of Seqera Labs highlights the CRG’s commitment to technology transfer, helping transform scientific results into tangible products and services for society. This funding round adds to an impressive track record in terms of start-ups in the CRG; six companies in total, five of which were created in the last seven years.
“This demonstrates the success of the research system that the Catalan government launched about 20 years ago. The creation of the CERCA centres, an ecosystem of research centres of excellence capable of attracting talent, is beginning to bear fruit in the field of knowledge transfer,” says Dr. Luis Serrano, Director of the Center for Genomic Regulation (CRG).
“Seqera’s success is is impressive for an academic start-up, especially in such a short amount of time. For the CRG, it constitutes a striking demonstration that our tireless commitment towards the translation of basic science into industrial value has been worth our continuous support. This success confirms our expectations and we anticipate it will be the first in a long series of similar achievements,” concludes Dr. Serrano.
Learn more on the CRG website.