Stamford may get most of the headlines these days when it comes to tech firms, but the minds behind health care device manufacturer Convexity Scientific are quite content with their home in Fairfield, thank you very much.
The company, which recently unveiled its first device – the pocket-size Flyp nebulizer for treatment of pulmonary conditions, including asthma and COPD — planned on being in the town from its 2014 inception, said CEO James Daniels at its 418 Meadow St. office.
“We’re within walking distance to the train, which gives us better access to talent north to New Haven and south to New York City,” Daniels said. “That’s a huge plus.”
The proximity of life science investors in the area, many of whom are now on the company’s board, was also a factor, Daniels continued. “The real estate value of where we are is exceptional, and the talent in this area is excellent as well — this is really the optimal place for us to do what we’re doing,” he said.
What Convexity is doing is trying to provide patients “with better options” for health care providers and patients “to make it easier to pursue a healthier life,” Daniels said. “And with the Flyp we’re trying to improve the health and well-being of asthmatics and people with other respiratory issues.”
Daniels — whose resume includes being president and CEO of High Ridge Brands, the $375 million personal care company in Stamford whose portfolio includes Zest, VO5, and Coast soap — was a Westport neighbor of Dr. Ralph Finger, whose background includes serving as an attending physician at such organizations as Northwell Health and Lenox Hill in New York.
“He was very connected to all kinds of pulmonary issues,” Daniels said, “and his daughter was born with an asthmatic condition.”
Over what the CEO said were “a few scotches,” they began discussing starting the new company, with the seeds of what would become Flyp already in Finger’s mind. Along with another neighbor, Paul Reiferson, the trio co-founded Convexity, with Finger as chairman, Reiferson as executive managing director and, in 2017, Daniels as CEO.
Flyp — which once had a more mundane moniker until Daniels, with his branding background, suggested the more “consumer-friendly” name — after having received FDA 510K marketing approval, was debuted in March at the Medtrade conference and expo in Las Vegas to general acclaim. Convexity is now rolling it out to consumers at a retail price of $275 — its website lists it at $199 — with plans to expand across the country and, according to Chief Commercial Officer Geoff Matous, eventually overseas.
In addition to developing its own medical devices, a number of which are already in the pipeline, Daniels said Convexity’s growth will be realized through licensing products and M&A.
“We’re not confining ourselves to medical devices,” he stressed. “We see a broad range of opportunities in the health and wellness space.”
And the company appears to have the resources to do just that. In early March it announced that it had closed an equity investment in a round led by Connecticut Innovations, Benslie Ltd. and Stonehenge Growth Capital. Kevin Crowley, managing director of investments at Connecticut Innovations, and Jared Talisman, a member of the growth capital team at Stonehenge, are both Convexity directors.
Convexity will use the funding to accelerate go-to-market activities with a significant expansion in sales hires and marketing efforts. Daniels said the company currently numbers nine employees. “We’re a small band of brothers,” he said, “but we’re looking to expand.”