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FEops, a medtech company based in Ghent (Flanders), is the innovative driving force behind a technology that supports doctors during operations on patients with cardiovascular diseases. The scale-up has recently raised EUR 3.3 million from the European Innovation Council fund as well as from its existing investors: Capricorn, Flanders’ public investment company PMV and Valiance. This investment is said to be a prelude to a new capital round.

Digital twins

Founded by Mathieu De Beule and Peter Mortier, FEops began in 2009 as a spin-off from UGent, one of Flanders’ universities. A good decade later, the growth company has been nominated as Scale-up of the Year 2022 in Flanders. And for good reason: its innovative business appeals to the imagination. FEops developed software that helps medical professionals with one of their most daunting tasks: to predict how a body will react to implants like heart valves. The FEops platform makes highly accurate predictions using “a digital twin,” a virtual representation of a real-world implant.

The breakthrough moment for our technology is just around the corner.

Mathieu De Beule
CEO of FEops

“We use the same modulation technology deployed by the automotive industry for crash tests,” explains FEops CEO Matthieu De Beule. “Through software simulations, car manufacturers no longer need to subject real cars to expensive crash tests to check if they meet safety regulations. The software simulations are trustworthy and much cheaper. At FEops, we help doctors use that same technology to choose the right implant and prepare their surgery to perfection.”

300 hospitals in 27 countries (and counting)

In recent years, FEops has concentrated mainly on product development. In 2017, it raised EUR 6 million for this purpose. “Also, it was important to have our technology verified by scientific research,” says De Beule. In September 2022, FEops published a study showing how a digital twin not only offers a higher chance of success but also saves time and substantially reduces the use of radiation and contrast materials.

More than 300 hospitals in 27 countries already use the FEops platform. In addition, FEops successfully worked toward achieving approval by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). “Our technology was already approved for use in the EU, the UK, Canada and Australia with more than 2,000 cases processed last year,” says De Beule. With the approval in the US in April of 2022, a large new market opened up.

New market opportunities

FEops plans to use the newly raised EUR 3.3 million to further market and commercialize its platform. It will do this in two ways: through doctors who want to use the technology and through implant manufacturers who can present a higher success rate thanks to the FEops platform.

Moreover, the funds provide opportunities to expand the platform. “We can’t go into details yet, but there are still heart diseases that our platform can help solve better,” says De Beule. By 2023, FEops plans yet another capital round to unlock even more potential. “The breakthrough moment for our technology is just around the corner.”

Big in Flanders’ ecosystem – and beyond

FEops is just one of the many successful scale-ups and other companies that are part of Flanders’ ecosystem for life sciences & health. Want to unravel this ecosystem in a virtual yet interactive way? Head to the Flanders360 platform and discover 300+ successful companies, universities, R&D centers, incubators and other players active in Flanders’ life sciences & health industry.

Alternatively, check out our industry overview to learn more about the available tax, legal and other incentives for establishing your life sciences & health hub in Flanders.

Reported by
newspaper De Tijd

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