Anteo Five Elements
Our strategy for growth comprises five elements:
- Exploiting Our IP
- Expanding Core Competencies and IP
- Developing our Product Pipeline
- Exploring Non-Core Opportunities
- Acquisition of Synergistic Assets
Developing and implementing a sound strategy to grow a business is not just a matter of “selling a widget”. The ability and flexibility to observe, learn and continue to evolve is important, and it is one of Anteo’s strengths. We are focused on an interactive and complementary set of key activities that will enable the value of our core technology to be maximised for the benefit of all stakeholders. The resources of an organisation must always be managed efficiently, especially in small organisations. At Anteo we address this by ensuring that each and every project offers benefits in a primary and multiple secondary aspects of our growth strategy. We also ask if each project will build, both directly and indirectly, on any interaction we have.
In recent years, we have worked closely with large IVD companies, and will continue to do so. The objective of co-developing products utilising the new chemistry technology, Mix&Go™, to solve certain intractable obstacles that IVD companies face in day-to-day processes and product development remains. During this period we have observed and learnt a lot about Mix&Go, how it might practically be applied and its commercial opportunities, as well as the ways of our target customers. This experience is pivotal as we progress towards attaining full commitments. Further, these experiences have expanded our horizons and will help us to realise new opportunities for Mix&Go that had not previously been identified, in both laboratories and in other markets.
We have a substantive offering that combines four important facets for success:
DISRUPTIVE TECHNOLOGY + KNOW-HOW + ROBUST PRODUCTS + OUR TEAM
By definition, a disruptive technology challenges the tried and tested way of doing things. In the case of our product range, we have learnt that our know-how adds significant value for potential customers. We have tried and tested, and we continue to try and test the opportunities for this unique technology platform. A new user will have more success adapting to a new way of doing things when real, hands-on support is provided by engaged and innovative scientists. Some customers have likened the experience to ‘breaking a habit’. Just like getting into a keyless car for the first time something intrinsically simple is not necessarily intuitive. A habit needs to be broken and minds opened to new ways of thinking. We have found that inexperienced technicians have often performed better in evaluating Mix&Go than their more learned colleagues.
What did we learn from this?
A suite of ready-to-use product kits with our know-how built in is a necessary part of an introductory package. By customising our product for specific applications we enhance its value for our customer.
This combination of technology and core competency built into fool-proof products has evolved to deliver a potent system to engage customers and then progress to a productive engagement once the technology is understood and fully appreciated. We anticipate this approach will shore up customer confidence and open more opportunities for paid research and collaboration for the development of customised products leading to wholesale supply or licensing, and we already have evidence of this occurring.
Since we developed this approach and made products available we have experienced greater attention and more productive interactions, both in speed and intensity, with large multinational players, than in previous years. Our most recent example is that one large player can envisage Mix&Go as a platform technology for use across their product portfolio.
OUR GOAL: Broad implementation of Mix&Go across a target’s products.
Each strategic element of our business complements another. This is fundamental to growing Anteo.
Exploiting Our IP
Proper exploitation of IP to maximise shareholder and stakeholder benefit requires a careful carve up of the IP. We need to be engaging across a number of markets. Each market has different requirements, operating parameters, nuances and timeframes. In healthcare alone there are the direct opportunities in testing for IVD, Life Sciences and Veterinary. In addition there is a broadening array of potential uses in Bioseparations and in In Vivo applications such as Medical Devices and Drug Delivery.
Understanding each is important in allowing the same or similar applications to earn revenue across different fields or different uses within a field.
Today we are in a position where companies from a variety of different sectors within healthcare are learning and appreciating the benefits our technology can bring to their products. Consequently Mix&Go is being applied in an increasing variety of uses not usually addressed by most companies, let alone a relatively small company such as Anteo.
How will we meet these demands and retain our focus? The answer is twofold:
- Mix&Go is a simple chemistry for surface interactions designed with a variety of uses in mind; and
- Potential customers are introduced by first using one of our AMG products to fully understand the outcomes possible for their particular business. Then, in most cases they commit to either co-develop a custom product or implement our kit or a close variant directly into their system.
In order to maximise our success Anteo needs both our strong core competencies and our IP to demonstrate our key point of difference – we know that we can coat any given surface for the purpose envisaged and we deliver the tools to achieve a positive outcome, with an ease customers do not expect.
Customers do business in a variety of ways. Consequently, Anteo must be adaptable. We endeavour to generate revenues from each interaction in one or several of the following ways:
- License the use of Mix&Go;
- Enter into supply agreements for the wholesale provision of an “off the shelf” Mix&Go product or a customised product for use within the scientific/clinical marketplace – both IVD and Life Science segments;
- Establish Research and Collaboration agreements to insert our technology into the development of products that a partner company is developing. Work of this sort is generally undertaken with the view that revenues will continue into the future once the product is commercially launched by our partner company.
Expanding Core Competencies and IP
Possession of a disruptive intellectual property is hugely valuable. While many researchers are inventive and innovative, the ability to develop a new disruptive technology and to be the custodian of the IP until it is fully commercially viable is key to a business’ success. The capacity to do this sets Anteo apart.
Anteo has invested in and developed the progressive and inventive work of Dr Joe Maeji. Dr Maeji’s unique and novel approach to interactions on synthetic surfaces and the impact when attaching biomolecules led to the first undertaking to fund the core research that created Mix&Go. We have been the custodians of this IP from this embryonic stage to now – we have a successful set of tools that we can confidently demonstrate are commercially viable for intended uses.
To date this investment has developed a set of core competencies that are reflected in our straight-forward offering:
“THE SURFACE YOU WANT ON THE SURFACE YOU HAVE”
The ability to create the ideal surface characteristics on any given base surface is no trivial development in research and development. The interchangeability between hydrophilic (water attracting) and hydrophobic (water repelling) surfaces with a desired contact angle has already resulted in two active opportunities for Anteo.
The core competencies we have and will continue to develop are:
The Anteo Team – Dr Cumming joined Anteo in 2009. Under his leadership the team has transformed from a strong research group to one that now also has significant capability in commercial development, productisation and manufacturability at an IVD level. Our technical strength and experience is well established and our business development and product support now has depth and breadth.
Quality – Assurance of quality is vital to any product manufacturer, especially in healthcare. Today our products demonstrate our quality assurance capability delivering predictability and consistency of products and services; a capability that has twice been audited by customers seeking to qualify us as suppliers with positive results. Our next step is to adopt International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) certification to formally underwrite this competency.
Technical Capability and Know How – the development in our technical ability to utilise Mix&Go on a given platform has expanded from specific particles in 2013 to a library of Mix&Go alternatives today. These applications are adapted across an array of platforms from particles of all sizes and many materials to membranes, biosensors, microarrays and microtitre plates, including engineering plastics such as COCs. This capability provides customers with an holistic approach to providing solutions. In immunoassays this is exemplified by Mix&Go’s capacity to bind target proteins to a surface and to improve sensitivity.
Intellectual Property – Anteo’s IP strategy can be separated into two parts;
- The core technology that covers the identification and generation of novel surfaces. This includes the granted patents “Generation of Surface Coating Diversity” (covering methods to generate libraries of different surfaces and their screening); “Use of Metal Complexes” (covering use of metal complexes to bind proteins to surfaces; and “Binding Systems” in National Phase (covering use of metal polymers as coatings).
- Novel and inventive applications made possible by our core technology. This includes “Conjugating Molecules to Particles” (covers coating nanoparticles) and “Heterofunctional Binding Systems” (covering materials such as thermosplastics and steel).
Developing Our Product Pipeline
End products are the lifeblood of most companies. Anteo is not a manufacturing business. Our model is focused on developing commercial relationships with end users of Mix&Go technology and getting them to adopt Mix&Go broadly.
The primary role of our commercially available Anteo AMG products is to provide an easy entry point for prospective adopters of Mix&Go that is fool-proof. This provides interested parties with access to easy-to-use Mix&Go products and allows us to concentrate our resources on companies with whom we are dealing directly.
The AMG product kits exemplify the array of capabilities and uses of Mix&Go. In 2015 we expect to continue to release products on a quarterly basis.
Our new AMG products demonstrate the ongoing expansion of capabilities for Mix&Go use.
We have instigated a program to support our product portfolio that aims to continually improve our messaging, content, processes and digital infrastructure, and to consequently increase our product sales. The automation of marketing tools intended to increase our inbound sales leads and convert existing and new traffic into product sales will also be implemented this year.
We have used the Mix&Go technology for the preparation of in-vitro diagnostic reagents. The Mix&Go method for immobilisation of antibodies is advantageous in many ways: it is much faster than many other methods; it is much easier than many other methods; last but not least it makes use of considerably fewer hazardous chemicals which in turn decreases the health risks and waste of hazardous chemicals. – Dr Björn Ekberg, R&D Manager Life Assays.
Exploring Non-core Opportunities
We define non-core opportunities as non-diagnostic applications of Mix&Go technology in Healthcare, Clean Tech, Mining or Other Industries. To be a successful technology company we know it is important to make our technology available to all potential users, thereby maximising the value of the technology and its uses outside IVD.
Two questions should be asked about exploring non-core opportunities at this stage in Anteo’s development:
- Is it appropriate for Anteo to investigate areas away from its core competency to use Mix&Go?A: Yes. Mix&Go was designed as a nanoglue with many potential uses. Exploration of applications should be undertaken provided they are not a distraction from our core business.
- Are current non-core activities a distraction?A: No. We provide for a small amount of “skunk works” to be undertaken by our scientists to investigate different ways of utilising Mix&Go. Alternatively, if a customer wishes to fund such an activity we are prepared to apply resources on a larger scale.
Provided non-core activities are well controlled and qualified then they both add to value creation using Mix&Go technology and improve the core competency of the organisation.
At this time Anteo has two non-core projects underway – one in Clean Technology and one in Medical Devices. Both are showing good promise.
Acquisition of Synergistic Assets
The acquisition of synergistic assets allows a company to mature and expand at a rate that it would not be possible organically. We have set three key criteria for the acquisition of any asset.
- It must be cash flow positive;
- It needs to be accretive; and
- It must provide technical synergy with the current Mix&Go business.
The first and last of these criteria speak for themselves but what does accretive mean to Anteo? Simply speaking, it adds value to our organisation immediately. Examples of elements that a target may possess that would positively contribute to accretion are:, ISO and/or regulator accreditation, presence in a desired geographical zone, excess production capacity and/or capability to manufacture Anteo products, a good name in the market place for its products, a capable management team and most importantly having products within its portfolio that can be improved in the short term with Mix&Go.