November 3, 2023
SkyCell, a Swiss startup developing smart containers for carrying medical supplies, has raised $57 million in its latest funding round.
The round was led by Catalyst, M&G Investments’ private assets strategy.
The latest funding will be used to expand its global footprint as it increases the production and rollout of its smart containers, designed to reduce carbon emissions and waste in the pharmaceutical industry.
Capable of withstanding temperatures between below 22 Fahrenheit to 158 Fahrenheit, SkyCell said its containers’ lightweight design and payload efficiency reduces carbon dioxide emissions by up to 50%.
Customers are also given access to end-to-end asset tracking so they can keep tabs on the location and status of shipments, as well as a platform to monitor and predict their carbon dioxide impact and adapt routes to drive sustainability.
By monitoring the containers, companies can reduce loss from drugs that have been damaged or spoiled in transit. SkyCell estimates that $35 billion worth of pharmaceutical products are lost each year due to temperature deviation.
The reusable containers also tackle the problem of disposable transport containers creating a large amount of landfill waste, such as styrofoam and chill packs.
“The wider industry has ambitious targets towards net zero as currently more than 70% of pharmaceuticals are distributed in throwaway packaging,” said Richard Ettl, SkyCell’s CEO. “This is a significant contributor to both CO2 impact and landfill and we will increasingly see regulatory pressures to address this in the form of import taxes.
“With this new investment, we can further accelerate along our growth path and strengthen our global footprint.”
“There’s a huge shortage of long-term, scale-up funding for ‘hard science’ companies developing IP-based solutions to some of the world’s biggest problems,” said Praveg Patil, deputy head of EMEA investments at M&G’s Catalyst team. “By becoming a long-term partner to SkyCell, we are enabling the global pharmaceutical industry to develop more sustainable ways of transporting temperature sensitive medicines and reducing the amount of medicines that will be thrown away.”
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