PALO ALTO, Calif. & WATERLOO, Ontario--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Silicon Valley-based neurotech intellectual property powerhouse NeuroVigil, and the University of Waterloo, Silicon Valley’s largest international supplier of tech talent, announced today they have signed an agreement clearing the way for University of Waterloo’s formal membership in NeuroVigil’s conglomerate, headed by Philip Low, NeuroVigil’s Chairman, CEO and Founder. The signing marks the formal international launch of Dr. Low’s vision to build a network of universities, healthcare systems and companies dedicated to the development of a host of sustainable biotechnologies, without imposing any cost on non-human animals, consistent with the 2012 Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness, the first formal document recognizing that consciousness was not limited to human animals.
“When I hosted the Francis Crick Memorial Conference in Cambridge, I invited distinguished colleagues to propose minor edits to the Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness which I had written and to boldly put their reputation on the line and join me in signing it. They heeded the call and that moment has changed history and laws all over the world and has led to more scientists and technologists putting their genius at the service of people without harming the environment, rather than playing a zero-sum game with it. I have taken the same community-focused approach with the conglomerate, in many ways one of the Declaration’s technological embodiments, and am delighted to choose as the first international invitee of my consortium a university renowned for its boldness, for its brilliance, and for its sense of community, demonstrated each day and night in the quality of its students, staff, leaders, alumni and spinoffs. This is a proud moment for Innovation, for those who depend on it, for Entrepreneurship, for the Environment, and for Canada, and it too shall powerfully reverberate across space-time,” said Dr. Low. “I am grateful to University of Waterloo’s enlightened leadership and especially to Dr. David Fransen, on my business advisory board and my Head of Strategic Operations for Canada, for having suggested Waterloo, and for having been instrumental in making this partnership a reality.”
“We are truly looking forward to working with Dr. Low and NeuroVigil on this initiative," said Dr. Charmaine Dean, University of Waterloo’s Vice-President of Research.
The conglomerate is focused on three main areas: 1. Communication and locomotion technologies for individuals suffering from ALS and Strokes, a project initiated by Dr. Low and the late Dr. Stephen Hawking; 2. Detection of biomarkers in asymptomatic individuals suffering from brain cancer or Parkinson’s; 3. Detection of drug side effects in seniors, as well as neurological damage heralding the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. The technologies are entirely human-based and non-invasive, and do not require animal testing of any kind. While all new companies in the conglomerate must have access to airtight intellectual property, an exception may be made for plant-based therapeutic companies which seek access to clinical trials to distinguish themselves in a crowded field.
Conglomerate members provide intellectual property, lab or office space, support with grants, clinical trials teams, legal and accounting resources, capital and access to marketing and clients, secured by convertible notes into NeuroVigil’s Series B financing. The first note was granted to Super Angel Dr. Howard Morgan, the first seed investor in NeuroVigil and Uber, who also led NeuroVigil’s $1/2 Billion pre-money 2015 Series A financing, a round backed by 30 investors, including 4 Super Angels, 4 family offices, 4 VC funds and 1 Strategic. This innovative financing structure allows prospective new companies to start up free from the obligation to relinquish equity to venture capital firms when they are at the most vulnerable stage of their development. While VC firms and pharma companies are barred from directly investing in and from taking a board seat in the new companies, they may have, subject to NeuroVigil’s veto, limited access to deals via a dedicated investment vehicle. “I have known Dr. Low since his founding of NeuroVigil in 2007,” said Brad Chisum, Co-founder and Partner of Launch Factory (and former CEO and co-founder of Lumedyne Technologies, a MEMS Inertial Sensor company acquired by Google), which was also granted a Series B note. “I am honored and excited to be invited to join forces with him and in the process to radically disrupt the healthcare and VC industries by helping usher in the most innovative preventive technologies of the future, thus lowering the costs of healthcare, and doing so in a win-win manner which respects entrepreneurs and Life in general.”
As an example of the power of the model’s approach, NeuroVigil is prototyping and is set to clinically test a new generation of iBrainTM personal brain monitoring devices for the senior care market via partner facilities in San Diego and Wyoming which are part of its conglomerate. These partners can be compensated with long-term convertible notes they have signed with NeuroVigil. If NeuroVigil decides to spin off this line of products into a new company, it has the option to allow these note holders to convert their holdings, in full or in part, into investments in the new company at seed valuations. According to Dr. Peter Salk, President of the Jonas Salk Legacy Foundation, the approach pioneered by NeuroVigil has "the potential to produce advances in neurobiological research and preventive medicine that are congruent with Jonas Salk’s desire to see the creation of an 'epidemic of health.’”
Based on NeuroVigil’s IP and proposal, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, a prominent Silicon Valley-based law firm known for working with leading technology and life sciences companies, has agreed to provide significant legal services to NeuroVigil — even in marked excess of what the firm has provided other successful Series A companies which went on to become technology giants — via a note convertible into NeuroVigil’s Series B. The firm plans to help NeuroVigil create 10 subsidiaries upon request. In doing so, the above firm joined Paul Kreutz, legendary attorney who founded DLA Piper’s healthcare practice in San Diego: “I am pleased to be part of the team that Dr. Low has assembled to support budding entrepreneurs as they begin commercializing additional applications of NeuroVigil's unique and valuable non-invasive brain analysis technology."
“These days, professors think they are entrepreneurs, entrepreneurs think they are investors and investors think they are professors,” said Dr. Low. “For far too long VCs, who for the most part have never directly created or run anything massively successful, are generally not very bright people and feign knowledge in fields they have no deep expertise in, have had their way with universities and founders, and thought they controlled Silicon Valley, Academia and the Future, when many are mere parasites risking other people’s money and paying themselves whether they succeed or fail. They fail so often that they seek to take a disproportionate amount from companies in order to recover their losses and act as if they are doing entrepreneurs a favor. If rejected for silly terms, or for not providing any value other than cash, and for being toxic, they will often do their utmost best to undermine selective founders who stand their ground. One rejected VC decided to falsely claim he was a 'neuroscientist' and claimed to be on my advisory board and another 'top' one supplicated me in vain to delete email correspondence in which he was asking to invest in my company. On a darker note, I have known one founder who took his life after having been tormented by a VC. The bullying is not limited to VCs. I have seen up-close Pharma companies threatened by startups whose technologies led to data and questions which were damaging to the survival of their compounds, do everything they could to sabotage them. This game stops now. We are going to return power where it belongs: to the actual builders.”
While Dr. Low is a Canadian citizen residing in the United States on an Einstein Green card, he has not provided the Canadian nor any other government with an investment opportunity into the conglomerate, which is entirely controlled by NeuroVigil -- which is itself controlled and 89%-owned by Dr. Low, its sole board director, and creator of NeuroVigil’s patent portfolio, mastermind of its deal structure and the author of the Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness. The Canadian government has provided assurances to Dr. Low that its processes can facilitate the relocation of any associate worldwide to Canada within 10 business days of any request. Moreover, while further negotiations and/or staff decisions are underway in the US, with one other Canadian institution, in South America, Europe, the Middle East, and other locations, a number of US partners have already joined. In order to avoid politicization of the network, their full identities shall not be revealed before January 21, 2021.
About NeuroVigil, Inc.
NeuroVigil is a global neurotechnology pioneer which develops proprietary non-invasive brain monitors and advanced machine learning algorithms to detect a constellation of biomarkers of pathologies in asymptomatic individuals, such as people with neurodegeneration, adverse drug side effects or brain cancer, and to ascertain intent including, at the request of the late Stephen Hawking, in individuals who cannot otherwise communicate. This arsenal of technologies does not require any non-human animal experimentation. The company successfully went on the market in 2009, garnered research contracts with elite pharmaceutical companies, and spearheads a growing international preventive health conglomerate of leading innovators and entrepreneurs. The company was founded and is led by Philip Low. For more information, please visit www.neurovigil.com.
About Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
For nearly 60 years, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati has offered a broad range of services and legal disciplines focused on serving the principal challenges faced by the management and boards of directors of business enterprises. The firm is nationally recognized as a leader in the fields of corporate governance and finance, mergers and acquisitions, private equity, securities litigation, employment law, intellectual property, and antitrust, among many other areas of law. With deep roots in Silicon Valley, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati has offices in Austin; Beijing; Boston; Brussels; Hong Kong; London; Los Angeles; New York; Palo Alto; San Diego; San Francisco; Seattle; Shanghai; Washington, D.C.; and Wilmington, DE. For more information, please visit www.wsgr.com.