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“Rise of the Rest Road Trip” Winner Earns Investment from the Abell Foundation

The Abell Foundation closed last week on an investment in Sisu Global Health, a Baltimore-based medical device company looking to improve access to quality, affordable health care in the developing world.

BALTIMORE (April 19, 2016) - Traditionally, medical device companies and non-governmental organizations fail to successfully scale products in the $64 billion medical device market in emerging economies. Sisu Global Health is bridging that gap by providing devices specifically for emerging markets. Their first device, the Hemafuse, allows for blood auto-transfusion and dramatically reduces the need for costly–and often unavailable—donor blood.  Sisu has built a network of doctors, hospitals, and public health agencies in select African countries to ensure those devices are locally validated and accessible.

“Sisu’s business of providing cost-effective medical devices for developing countries and its network of support within its target markets and with international NGOs is compelling,” said Eileen O’Rourke, the Abell Foundation’s Chief Financial Officer.  “They are a great example of the early-stage companies taking root in Baltimore City and leveraging our strong local resources.”

Sisu moved to Baltimore from Michigan in 2015 after securing an investment from DreamIt Health, a joint venture of Johns Hopkins University with the Abell Foundation. It will be developing its devices in Baltimore at Harbor Designs and Manufacturing.

“The proximity to the world-class medical community at Johns Hopkins and the University of Maryland, Baltimore, the international focus of Jhpiego and Washington, DC, not to mention the energy and support around entrepreneurship has made Baltimore a great place for us to build our company,” said Carolyn Yarina, Sisu’s CEO.

In addition to support from the Abell Foundation, Sisu won the live competition in Steve Case’s “Rise of the Rest Road Trip” in September and is making strong progress in its goal of raising $1 million to scale its business.    

 The Foundation’s investment follows an investment in Vasoptic last month and underscores the Foundation’s continuing commitment to supporting Baltimore-based technology and medical device companies with strong potential for growth.