Med-tech startup SigTuple raises $5.8 mn from Accel, IDG Ventures, others

13 Feb, 2017

Medical-technology startup SigTuple Technologies Pvt. Ltd has raised $5.8 million (around Rs 38.8 crore) in a Series A funding round led by Accel Partners with participation from IDG Ventures, Endiya Partners, pi Ventures, VH Capital and Axilor Partners.

A number of angel investors, including Flipkart co-founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal; and Amit Singhal, senior vice president at Uber, also participated in the round, the company said in a statement.

SigTuple will use the fresh funds to expand the team and strengthen its platform and products. It will also invest significantly in marketing and accelerate its efforts to get regulatory clearances for global markets.

The firm had raised $740,000 last year from Sachin Bansal, Binny Bansal, Accel Partners, and a few other angel investors, including former Biocon executive Nirupa Bareja and Amazon Lab126 executive Debanjan Mukherjee.

The Bangalore-based company was founded in 2015 by Tathagato Rai Dastidar, Rohit Kumar Pandey and Apurv Anand, who all previously worked at Big Data Labs of American Express.

The startup builds cloud-based solutions for medical diagnosis using artificial intelligence (AI) techniques and has tied up with medical institutions to get data for the analysis.

SigTuple's solutions allow labs and hospitals to implement a hub-and-spoke model where medical experts can operate from hub and devices can be installed in spokes.

"Our goal is to develop intelligent, scalable and affordable disease screening solutions which can empower medical experts and facilitate quality healthcare delivery to the masses. Our initial focus is on the solutions for the screening tests so that we can positively impact a larger population not only in India but globally," said Pandey, co-founder and CEO, SigTuple.

'Manthana', a continuous learning platform powered by AI for healthcare, is its flagship product. The platform is used to churn data to generate intelligence. Manthana allows SigTuple ingest visual medical data from different devices and build a longitudinal memory. The company claims that the platform has capability to train, validate and execute AI and ML (machine learning) powered models to classify various objects, detect diseases and compute the metrics for reporting. The metrics provided by the platform are supported by visual evidence which eliminates the need for the medical expert to sit next to the patient, medical device or biological sample.

Currently, SigTuple is using Manthana to provide solutions for automated analysis of peripheral blood smear, urine and semen samples, retinal scans and chest x-rays.

The company is also focusing on automated analysis of medical images, for which it is readying a product named 'Shonit'. Shonit is a solution for automatically analysing images of blood captured through a microscope. It performs analysis such as white blood cells differential count and detects different types of anaemia, parasitic infections like malaria and different forms of leukaemia.

"When we evaluate opportunities, one of the most important things we look at is the fit between the founders and the business opportunity. In this case, the AI/ML part of the business is the core and the background of the founders is a great fit. We believe that they have a well-thought-through approach to the problem and hence we decided to back them," said Barath Shankar Subramanian, Accel Partners.