Today on World Cancer Day,AI-driven cancer detection platform C the Signs is proud to announce £5,000,000 of investment to move closer to their mission to create a future where every patient survives cancer.
Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally, with the stage at diagnosis being the single most important factor affecting survival. Currently half of all patients are diagnosed in the later stages, with less than 35% surviving to 5 years. Yet, if diagnosed early, over 80% would survive 10 years or more.
The £5,000,000 investment from MMC, Ataraxia and Acequia Capital, alongside notable Angels including the past CEO of AXA Health, past CEO of Bupa, and Founder of Monzo, will be transformative in driving forward plans to scale the impact of the technology to accelerate early cancer detection and survival.
In 2021, C the Signs conducted over 100,000 patient risk-assessments and diagnosed over 6,000 patients with cancer. The system has been instrumental during the pandemic, detecting more patients with cancer compared to pre-pandemic levels. C the Signs aims to have its technology in the hands of every GP Practice in the UK by the end of 2022.
The C the Signs AI system analyses thousands of data points, using a combination of clinical signs, symptoms, risk factors and other markers, in order to spot which cancer(s) a patient is at risk of and fast-track them to the most appropriate test or referral – in less than 30 seconds.
Founded by two NHS doctors following the loss of a patient due to a delayed cancer diagnosis, Dr Bea Bakshi and Dr Miles Payling set out to transform early cancer detection and build a future where every patient survives cancer.
General Practitioner, Dr Shameer Shah of Enderley Road Medical Centre, says:
‘C the Signs is great for managing our cancer risk. I ran a middle-aged chap through the tool and followed the advice to order a chest x-ray and later sent a 2-week-wait referral to respiratory. It led to a lung cancer diagnosis, and he has since been operated on and doing well.’
Co-founder & CEO, Dr Bea Bakshi, says:
‘Every patient we identify with cancer early takes us one step closer to our mission of creating a future where every patient can survive cancer. This investment will enable C the Signs to scale the impact we can have on patient survival and ensure C the Signs is in the hands of every healthcare professional. As a woman of colour and CEO of a tech company with 50% women and people of colour in senior leadership positions, this is also a win for representation within the industry.’
Alexia Arts, Principal at MMC Ventures, says:
‘Cancer is unfortunately a disease that will affect everyone with statistics showing that 1 in 2 UK people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. Early cancer detection is notoriously difficult as it is a collection of hundreds of diseases, all presenting with different signs and symptoms.
‘At MMC we talk about backing companies using technology to transform industries, but C the Signs’ technology has the ability to transform lives, aiming to solve the healthcare challenge of our time.
‘We look forward to supporting Bea and Miles to build the most unique dataset of cancer presentations worldwide and to create a future where every patient is given the best possible chance to survive cancer.’
Andrew Macadam, Global Field Lead, Microsoft for Startups, says:
‘On behalf of Microsoft for Startups, I am joining the team to congratulate C The Signs and Founder & CEO Dr Bhavagaya Bakshi on their fundraising of £5M seed round.
‘At Microsoft for Startups, we are committed to driving positive social transformation using 21st century technology and are excited to be working with C The Signs. Having originally joined Microsoft’s AI for Social Impact Programme early last year, in partnership with Microsoft UK, Microsoft for Startups and Social Tech Trust, we saw the potential in C The Signs’ multi-platform tool which supports GPs to identify patients at risk of cancer at the earliest and most curable stage of the disease. Microsoft for Startups is also delighted to see MMC Ventures leading C The Signs round whose team is empowering inspiring founders such as Dr Bea Bakshi and supporting game-changing solutions in early-cancer detection.’