Steve Couldwell, the med-tech’s chief executive since November, recently visited the Proactive studio to explain what 2018 and beyond holds.
“2017 was a year of change and the most important thing was the successful fundraise (£40mln) in August.
that gave Tissue the finance to acquire Cellright, which was the transformation the company really needed, he said.
“Integration of that business has gone extremely well and we are now in the position of really trying to kick on in 2018.”
Trading momentum strong
“The momentum that we took into this year from a revenue point of view was very good.
“DermaPure, the legacy Tissue Regenix brand if you like, ended the year with growth of 46% year-on-year which was very satisfying.
“Cellright, too, carried strong momentum through the end of the year and that's really important for us because it's easy when an organisation is going through an integration to somehow just miss a few numbers and that wasn't the case.”
What has Cellright added?
“First of all, it gives us another platform technology.
“We obviously had dCELL, which is a technology for soft tissue repair. Cellright's technology is used for bone repair and replacement.
“So putting soft tissue and bone together means that we have a very broad offering that we can give to clinicians.
“We can help patients in orthopaedics, in plastic surgery and in urology and in many different clinical settings.
“Cellright was very successful in building regional national distribution networks in the US and in some export markets as well.
“From that we can build a base from which to carry both portfolios of products going forward.
"DermaPure (skin graft) was launched three years ago in the US, predominantly into wound care.
Since that period of time, we've proven the technology but feel that there are opportunities outside of wound care.
“So we rebranded the business biosurgery, which allows us to have dialogue with a broader range of clinicians, and especially in general surgery where there is just so much more opportunity for DermaPure to really make a difference.”
Ortho pure XT
“An application for a European CE mark for Ortho pure XT (ligaments) was submitted in December.
“We are just now waiting for the notified body to come back with (hopefully) some positive news.
“We have agents/distributors ready to go as soon as we get that authority.”
Distributors and partnerships
“Partnerships will be really important for us in the future.
“Having built an organisation now with two very significant platform technologies, we need to kick on and really grow, so adding scale and pace to the organisation is important.
“What you'll see from Tissue Regenix in the future are more of strategic partnerships.
“For example, the Arthrex arrangement signed in March is very important to us.
“Arthex is the world's leading sports medicine organisation.
“It has a direct sales force of about 1,200 people and carries our product now through a network of about 2,000 individuals in the US.
"We are excited about what that collaboration can do.
"For DermaPure, we signed a distribution agreement with Arms Medical and that's an exclusive arrangement for the urology and gynaecology procedures market.
“They've done a terrific job so far and we look forward to that growing into the future.”
“We are not intending to build a sales and marketing organisation in Europe or in Asia.
So to be successful, we are going to rely on national or regional distribution through strategic partnerships.
“We have a number of conversations ongoing, they are in their infancy but we remain positive.
Dental an opportunity
Cellright had about 20% of the business in the dental area and launched the dental fix brand to carry its technology into the market.
We can combine the dental fix brand, which is bone replacement, with the DermaPure brand for soft tissue and that allows us to offer the best of both bone and soft tissue repair.
"The procedure is faster for the patient, so everybody wins.
“The nice thing from a business point of view about dental is that it doesn't have the same constraints as healthcare.
"Cash or insurance payments means a different dynamic for us and so lots of opportunity."
Cardiac valve business
“We have a joint venture in Rostock in Germany and a manufacturing licence is expected around the end of 2018.
“After that, the next step is the marketing authorisation, which will be some time in 2019.
“This is a business based around the dCELL process again and leveraging ten-year patient information patient data from Brazil.
“We are augmenting that original research with a three-centre, 90 patient paediatric trial.
“The conclusion and publication will be possibly first quarter next year.”
"Shareholders have been very patient with us and we respect that.
"That's important to us, we owe them the opportunity to benefit from what we do."
At 7.62p, Tissue is valued at £88mln.