Echo Amplified – Recap of Q2 2023

Welcome to Echo Amplified, where each quarter we revisit the latest from our portfolio companies, highlight new investments in cutting-edge ideas, and feature founders who are disrupting and making an impact across industry.

Read on for the insights, including an exclusive Q&A with Will Edwards, CEO of Firehawk Aerospace.

Wheeler Bio adds key partner

After completing its successful Series A fundraise, Wheeler Bio is forging ahead with readying a state-of-the-art biomanufacturing facility to produce its first batches this fall. Wheeler also welcomed a new investor and key support partner, Charles River Laboratories International, Inc. (NYSE: CRL)

Catch me up: A collaboration was recently announced that has brought Wheeler’s innovative manufacturing platform and Charles River’s testing operations and know-how under one roof.

Why it matters: The addition of a satellite Charles River biologics testing lab means Wheeler will have fast and reliable industry-leading quality control processes on-site. This proximity will reduce time in developing and determining the viability of new drugs and therapeutics.

What they’re saying:

We are thrilled to welcome Charles River’s RightSource on-site at our state-of-the-art drug substance manufacturing facility in downtown Oklahoma City. On-site support by the industry’s leading testing provider adds considerable value to our growing base of clients advancing important therapeutic antibodies and other biologics into human trials for the first time.

Award-winning Prairie Surf

Prairie Surf Creative and the Film Education Insitute of Oklahoma's collaboration with Douglass High School won six Telly Awards and is up for a Heartland Emmy.

Beyond Prairie Surf’s world-class sound stages attracting large-scale productions and filmmakers to Oklahoma, the creative division is proving its storytelling excellence.

Awards and accolades: In recent months, Prairie Surf Creative has received several prestigious honors, including six wins at the annual Telly Awards that recognize the best work in television and video from around the world.

Meanwhile, Prairie Surf, in partnership with the Film Education Institute of Oklahoma, is training up the next generation of storytellers. Look no further than this NFL-style hype video from Douglass High School that’s up for a Heartland Emmy and also won six Telly Awards.

Deka Biosciences advances Phase 1 clinical human trial

Deka Biosciences reached a new milestone in the development of an important cancer therapy.

Catch me up: Deka developed a promising treatment for advanced solid cancers and administered the first patient dose in April – meaning it can now study the response and consider the possibility of expanded use.

What they’re saying:

We are beyond thrilled to begin the clinical trial... Importantly, we anticipate that the results of the study will confirm the clinical safety, pharmacokinetics, exploratory efficacy and correlative biomarker responses to our first Diakine, establishing a solid foundation for the expanded use of this treatment in cancer patients.

Echo makes new investment in MediView

Echo was proud to recently add MediView XR, Inc. to our portfolio of strategic investments.

Why it’s important: Through use of clinical augmented reality and surgical navigation technology to provide a sort of “X-Ray vision,” MediView is on the verge of revolutionizing certain procedures and image guided therapy by honing a concept first developed at Cleveland Clinic.

What they’re saying:

We are energized by the backing of influential and strategic investment collaborators spanning healthcare, industry, financial and government sectors who recognize the growing clinical and industry adoption and value of clinical mixed reality solutions... Working together to build a clinical augmented reality digital ecosystem better equips healthcare practitioners with advanced surgical visualization and navigation tools to deliver better care and enable greater patient access.

Go deeper: Learn more about MediView’s cutting-edge technology here.

Founder Q&A: Will Edwards

Will Edwards is the Co-Founder and CEO of Firehawk Aerospace.

As we launch this new series highlighting CEOs of companies that Echo is either invested in or intrigued by, we are excited to feature Will Edwards, CEO of Firehawk Aerospace. Firehawk is a startup that patented a hybrid, 3D-printed rocket fuel with the potential to not only disrupt but also improve the rocket engine market.

It’s pretty unbelievable what we’re building right now… We truly do believe it’s going to have a multi-billion-dollar impact on the industry. We’re not looking to go small, and we are dead set on turning Firehawk into the big American rocket engine design and manufacturing firm and building the industry-leading rocket engine.

Dive in: Learn more about Firehawk’s cutting-edge technology, how it works, and why it matters by reading our exclusive Q&A here.


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