Imaging Startup Phi Optics Closes Seed Funding Round

  Imaging Startup Phi Optics Closes Seed Funding Round

Business Wire

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- November 6, 2013

Phi Optics, Inc., a company that develops imaging solutions for life sciences
and bio-pharma researchers, has secured $250,000 in seed funding from venture
capital funds. The seed series was led by Champaign-based Serra Ventures and
includes New Jersey-based Newport Holdings LP and Champaign-based Illinois
Ventures LLC.

The funding will support development of optical microscopes designed for
faster and more sensitive imaging of live cells and tissues using Phi Optics
patented technology, Quantitative Phase Imaging (QPI).

Phi Optics also has received a Phase 1 SBIR (Small Business Innovation
Research) award from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The SBIR funds
were used toward a feasibility study for translating QPI technology from
university lab to commercial product. Phi Optics also has developed strategic
partnerships with Agilent Technologies and Carl Zeiss Microscopy.

"Phi Optics products empower bio-pharma and life sciences academia researchers
to explore deeper, discover more, and ultimately cure better," said Dr.
Gabriel Popescu, Co-Founder and CEO of Phi Optics, Inc.

About Phi Optics: Phi Optics designs and manufactures devices based on
Quantitative Phase Imaging (QPI), a label free and quantitative imaging
technology with nanoscale sensitivity. QPI-enabled devices have applications
in life sciences, diagnostic pathology, and nanotechnology markets. Founded by
Drs. Gabriel Popescu and Catalin Chiritescu, Phi Optics is commercializing
technology initially developed in Prof. Popescu's laboratory at the University
of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The company is a graduate of the NSF
Innovation Corps program (March 2012 cohort) and is located in the
EnterpriseWorks incubator in the University of Illinois Research Park. For
more information visit

About University of Illinois Research Park: Research Park at the University of
Illinois at Urbana-Champaign provides an environment where technology-based
businesses can work with faculty and students to take advantage of
opportunities for collaborative research. Located on campus, the Research Park
is home to more than 90 companies, employing 1,400 people in high-technology
careers. Major corporate operations in the Research Park include: ADM, Abbott
Laboratories, Anheuser Busch InBev, Caterpillar, Citrix, Deere & Company, Dow,
Littelfuse, Neustar, Raytheon, Riverbed, Sony, State Farm, and Yahoo. The
Research Park is also home to 30+ startup companies that are commercializing
technology. For more information, visit


Phi Optics, Inc.
Dr. Catalin Chiritescu, 217-751-2245
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