March 12, 2020 was the day the Dow Jones Industrial Average had its largest drop since 1987, the year I was born. It was an important date during the unprecedented year that 2020 has become. For Qualio, and for me personally, it was the beginning of the next chapter in our life as a company: it was the day we decided to take the next step and start fundraising for our Series A to double down on supporting our growing, global customer base.

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The original idea behind Qualio was a result of my own personal experience. I had studied to earn my Pharmacy degree and worked both as a pharmacist and in quality and R&D roles at global pharmaceutical companies.

A screenshot from my phone on 3/12.

In these roles, I quickly noticed how companies were struggling with quality and regulatory compliance. Even the most innovative biotech, medical device, and pharma companies often still relied on manual, paper-based and spreadsheet-driven processes to track quality issues and prepare their regulatory filings. I couldn't believe it. The most important promise that pharma, biotech, and medical device companies make is around quality; that their products will be safe, effective, and work consistently.

Qualio was founded to help life sciences organizations all over the world deliver on this promise every day. With the first cloud quality management system designed to support the entire life sciences ecosystem, we enable life sciences companies to bring new life-saving products and medicines to market quickly and scale them successfully.

Qualio Secures Series A Funding Round

I am thrilled to announce today the close of an $11 million Series A funding round led by Storm Ventures along with new investors Sorenson Ventures, Operator Partners, and existing investors MHS Capital and Frontline Ventures. We are also thankful to have Arun Penmestsa of Storm Ventures join our board of directors.

The journey from March 12, 2020 to today has been a unique experience. The market's drop, coupled with a lack of in-person meetings necessitated by COVID-related restrictions, created a very different fundraising landscape than what I would have experienced just a month or two earlier. Yet here we are.

When I started Qualio, the company was completely bootstrapped. At first, I worked on the idea part-time. Slowly, I gained momentum. I recruited a few people -- all remote -- and eventually I moved to the United States from Ireland, so that I could attract more talent and customers.

From Day 1, we have always believed that culture and competency trump geography. And I believe that our remote-first, location-agnostic approach has helped guide us successfully through this latest chapter. In addition to having a global team that was already 100% comfortable working remotely, it enabled us to seamlessly execute presentations and investor meetings over video conference, successfully closing the round without a single in-person meeting.

With this new round of funding, we plan to continue investing in two key areas: Our product and people. We are a truly product-led company, and we are doubling down on our eQMS to enable teams to bring life-saving products to market quickly and scale successfully.

Today, life sciences companies all over the world are working incredibly hard to get life-saving products to market, but unfortunately, they are held back at every turn due to the complexity of bringing new medicines to the people that need them. The additional complexity in healthcare comes from the burden of proof that a company’s products are safe and effective, and that they can consistently produce and deliver them.

Although quality is a core function for life sciences companies, many teams still rely on traditional, inefficient paper, Excel, or email-based processes. This leaves companies vulnerable to costly product development delays, failed audits, multi-million dollar lawsuits, and severe reputational damage.

Enter Qualio.

Qualio unites life sciences teams, tools, and data to support quality-driven product development and operations. We enable companies to launch products quickly and scale successfully once they are in the market. What’s more, Qualio ensures that quality is central to every employee’s activities, while maintaining a constant state of audit readiness, with no additional effort and increased overall productivity.

The recent spread of COVID-19 highlights the importance of Qualio’s ability to increase the speed that breakthrough treatments can get to market through reducing cycle-time and cost, and increasing transparency. Read about how we're helping.

So much has happened -- for us all -- in 2020, and I’m incredibly grateful for the faith and trust our team, our customers, and our investors have placed in our product and our vision. This is truly only the beginning of all the great things in store for Qualio and our customers.

 

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Published by Robert Fenton July 16, 2020
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