Safeguard Scientifics is a holding company that invests in growth-stage life sciences and technology. In addition to capital, Safeguard provides strategic, operational and management resources to its portfolio companies. As a public company (NYSE: SFE), Safeguard is not subject to the limits of the three-to-seven-year fund raising cycles found in venture capital or buyout firms. This allows Safeguard to focus on growing its portfolio companies at an appropriate pace.
Safeguard has investments in ten technology and ten life science-focused companies; the latter includes the following diagnostics, medical device and specialty pharmaceutical firms:
- Advanced BioHealing
- Avid Radiopharmaceuticals
- Rubicor Medical
In this interview, James Datin, Managing Director of Safeguard, discusses the diagnostics sector, which, he notes, grew by 35% last year (among publicly traded companies). Datin believes growth will be driven by an increased focus on personalized medicine and changes in the reimbursement landscape.
Safeguard has a 60% stake in Clarient (profiled here). Clarient’s services include: diagnosing solid tumors, cancer sub-typing, classifying patients into prognostic categories (i.e. low, medium and high risk groups), identifying which drugs or therapy paths are best for patients, monitoring patient on therapy, searching for residual disease during and post therapy, and detecting relapse or cancer transformation.