ERT acquires Exco InTouch

Merging of two companies opens up possibilities in the ‘bring your own device’ market

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PHILADELPHIA—Seeking to conquer the competitive eClinical landscape, ERT, a provider of patient data collections for use in clinical drug development, has acquired Nottingham, England-based Exco InTouch, a data capture and digital health solutions company, making ERT a one-stop shop to provide the biopharmaceutical industry with the most advanced and comprehensive choice for electronic clinical outcome assessments (eCOA), patient engagement and digital health. 
The bottom line, according to ERT, is that the combination delivers end-to-end eCOA, patient engagement and digital health solutions to better serve customers. 
The deal now enables ERT’s sponsors to turn to a single strategic partner to support the full clinical development-to-commercialization spectrum, from early phase to in-market and from the simplest to the most complex, the company states. Plus, customers can minimize their risk, run safer and more efficient programs and get new clinical treatments to patients more quickly, ERT indicates. 
“With this acquisition, we have combined our science-driven solutions that are delivered across every modality with patient-driven solutions that open up the BYOD [bring your own device] market to create a seamless approach to eCOA, patient engagement and digital health,” said James Corrigan, president and CEO of ERT, in a news release.
“Exco InTouch has a great history of innovation, and since its inception has made significant contributions to the eClinical landscape,” Corrigan added. “We are delighted to welcome them to the ERT team, and look forward to working together to deliver market-leading offerings that solve our clients’ most complex challenges.” 
“ERT is the eCOA industry leader with a strong history in developing novel eClinical products and technologies to minimize risk and uncertainty in clinical research. They were an obvious choice when we were assessing our strategic business development options,” said Tim Davis, founder and CEO of Exco InTouch, in the same news release. 
The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, and both ERT and Exco InTouch declined to comment further on the acquisition.
ERT delivers widely deployed solutions in centralized cardiac safety, respiratory and eCOA, which includes patient-, clinician-, observer- and performance-reported outcomes, as well as cloud-based analytics and performance metrics. By efficiently integrating these solutions through a system built upon a scientific and regulatory foundation, ERT says, the company collects, analyzes and delivers safety and efficacy data critical to the approval, labeling and reimbursement of pharmaceutical products.
Working across clinical and digital health programs, Exco InTouch’s flexible provisioning enables involvement which integrates into daily life, resulting in motivated and compliant patients, reducing costs associated with withdrawals from trials and improving overall program results, according to the company
Since 2004, Exco InTouch has engaged with more than one million patients across 97 countries at over 32,000 hospitals and clinics, in 70 languages. Sixteen of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies have deployed its applications in, as the company says, “the knowledge that data is secure and protected, in line with global regulatory and data protection requirements.”
The company’s product includes Gather, which is an end-to-end application system supporting patients, sites and sponsors throughout the clinical trial process. It provides two-way transfer of information between patients, site managers and study teams and helps ensure trials remain strictly within study protocols.
In addition, the company offers disease management programs. It develops condition-specific care plans which enable the patients to learn more about their condition, remain engaged with treatment regimens and better manage their conditions. Exco InTouch’s digital health platform has been implemented in therapeutic areas such as diabetes, dermatology, respiratory diseases and hemophilia. 
Exco InTouch was the technology vendor for Pfizer’s 2011 mobile-enabled clinical trial, one of the first efforts to use mobile technology to decentralize a drug trial, and in doing so made a name for itself as an enabler of remote, mobile clinical trials.
The company has also worked with many other pharma notables, both to support clinical trials and to help them build patient-facing apps. For example, Exco launched a patient-facing app called MeAndMyCOPD in partnership with the U.K. National Health Service and AstraZeneca in 2013. Just this year, they worked with Novartis to launch an app for people with chronic hives.
Exco InTouch has raised $9.7 million over two rounds of funding, most recently in 2014, when it received a $5-million investment from Albion Ventures and Scottish Equity Partners. 

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