UCL spin out Odin Vision acquired by Olympus to supercharge global growth

Odin Vision - Odin Vision
Odin Vision - Odin Vision
Odin Vision, a UCL spin out company that develops pioneering AI-driven endoscopy technology to help better detect cancers, has been acquired by Olympus Corporation (Olympus) for up to £66 million.

The company, spun out of research led by UCL scientists, is a world-leading pioneer of cloud AI-enabled applications for endoscopy, which enables clinicians to detect some early stage colorectal and oesophageal cancers. It was launched in 2019 with the support of B usiness (UCLB) , that helps academic entrepreneurs to commercialise IP , in the form of new businesses.

The acquisition deal will see Olympus acquire Odin’s entire portfolio of award-winning AI solutions, enabling Odin’s life-saving tools to reach millions of new patients around the world.

Commenting Peter Mountney, CEO of Odin Vision and Honorary Associate Professor at UCL Computer Science, said: "I’m incredibly proud of the team. We started with a university research project at UCL and transformed it into a commercial healthcare technology that will help millions around the world in the fight against cancer."

Odin Vision began with the research of Patrick Brandão, Professor Danail Stoyanov and Professor Laurence Lovat, based at the UCL Wellcome / EPSRC Centre for Interventional and Surgical Sciences. Their pioneering work developed polyp detection systems which assisted doctors in the detection of colorectal cancer. With the support of UCLB, UCL’s commercialisation company, their research was then spun out and led to the founding of Odin Vision.

UCL sits within a clinical-academic environment, meaning R&D in the lab can be inspired by and progressed with the support of a real-world outstanding clinical environment.

Dr Anne Lane, CEO of UCLB, said: "We are incredibly proud to see Odin Vision’s successful exit to Olympus. UCLB has worked with Odin over a number of years to create a real-world impact from the research, through IP support and access to funding, as well as hands-on advice and guidance from the UCLB team. Odin Vision’s success is testament to the hard work that goes on within our commercialisation team supporting spinouts to realise their full potential as they work to tackle society’s biggest challenges."

UCLB also worked with AlbionVC to create UCL Tech Fund (UCLTF), who backed Odin Vision with early-stage funding in 2019. Using this backing, Odin Vision has proven the potential for patient impact in colorectal and oesophageal cancer detection in the UK, paving the way for an acquisition and exit that supercharges its impact. Odin Vision’s innovative software ultimately has the potential to save millions of pounds for the National Health Service.

David Grimm, Investment Director, UCLTF added: " Odin is a fantastic example of world-class research at UCL being backed with capital and support to enable their entrepreneurial journey. It’s been wonderful to work with this great team and be part of their journey from laboratory to real-world, scaled impact and outstanding financial return."

Odin Vision also received support from UCL’s Innovate UK EDGE, within UCL Innovation & Enterprise. Through the Innovate UK EDGE team, UCL assists high-growth businesses including trailblazing startups and research and development (R&D) intensive spinouts wanting to scale up and grow internationally, driving UK economic growth.

The successful acquisition of Odin Vision is yet another example of the UK’s commercialisation ecosystem at work. The UK is one of the premier locations for academic entrepreneurs to develop and commercialise game-changing innovation, with this successful exit worth up to £66 million now enabling a step forward in the detection of colorectal cancer.

Nacho Abia, Chief Operating Officer of Olympus said: "Incorporating Odin Vision’s leading AI technology portfolio and innovation capabilities into the broader Olympus digital roadmap will create synergies that enable us to commercialize highly valuable endoscopy-focused software tools. Their product portfolio fits perfectly with our broader efforts to enhance the capabilities we bring in support of clinicians and to help care teams harness decision-driving data."


Kate Corry

(0)20 3108 6995

Email: k.corry  [at] ucl.ac.uk
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