Primal Pictures Fundraising

Background

In March 1991 a computer graphics pioneer Chris Briscoe met an award winning documentary film maker Laurie Wiseman.  The result of this meeting was the formation of Primal Pictures and their aim was to create a complete and medically accurate 3D model of the human anatomy.

Chris and Laurie went on to produce Cad-Cam models of the human anatomy, mapping out and modeling every anatomical structure in 3D and building computer graphic models with animations and movie clips showing function, biomechanics, surgical and therapeutic procedures.


ICON’s role

Primal’s early years were spent collaborating with UCL and seed funding for the business came from government and Dti grants, effectively Primal  were one of the very early university spin outs.

However, in 1999 they approached ICON to help them raise their first venture capital round of £950k. The company lacked the financial resources necessary to undertake further R&D that could enable them to continue mapping out the human anatomy and start developing products.

Initially Primal had found it very hard to secure funding, VCs caught up in the tech boom were wading through literally piles of business plans, trying to spot the winners. Primal needed to stand out and we worked with the management team to help them present a compelling investment story.


Result

When initial funding was successfully secured we negotiated the deal structure, increasing the valuation and thereby maximising the shareholder value for Chris and Laurie.  A second funding round of £3.2 million in March 2001 secured further funds for R&D and the development of a broad sales and marketing campaign.

Funding has exceeded £4 million and we are delighted to have been involved in both equity rounds. The VC investment has enabled Primal to launch 25 titles and they have more in development. The company are on course to become the dominant global player in the rapid growth markets of healthcare publishing training and education, their products have received wide acclaim and numerous awards, including 4 awards from the British Medical Association, and they supply products to over half of the worlds leading medical schools.  Primal have opened a US offices and are on track to develop the 3D interactive version of Gray’s Anatomy. To date, there is no serious competition for their products, which are the most comprehensive presentations of the human anatomy every created.