Anxiety VR startup Rescape receives £480,000 in funding

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Wales-based virtual reality (VR) startup Rescape Innovation has received £480,000 in funding.

A group of local angel investors and the Development Bank for Wales closed the equity deal with Rescape worth £480,000, which the startup intends to invest in new technology, export and develop new products to support patient recovery and rehabilitation.

The deal was led by South Wales-based investor Andrew Diplock, with support from Angels Invest Wales, part of the Development Back of Wales, Geldards and Capital Law.

Diplock and the syndicate of investors secured match funding from the £8 million Wales Angel Co-investment Fund.

From left to right: Steve Holt, director of Angels Invest Wales; Glenn Hapgood, director for Rescape; Matt Wordley, chief executive officer of Rescape; and Andrew Diplock, lead investor

Commenting on the investment deal, Diplock said: “The future is exciting for Rescape and with the new funding, the business will be able to make the right investment at the right time with innovative technology in the developing healthcare sector.”

“I was pleased to be able to introduce this South Wales-based business to a group of leading and experienced business people—they all agreed to back the exciting future development of this company. I focus my investment activity on high growth potential South Wales-based businesses. Rescape Innovation certainly fits the bill and I look forward to working with the management team in the years to come.”

Rescape received its initial launch funding from the Accelerated Growth Programme, which is funded by Welsh government, and the European Regional Development Fund.

The startup, based in Cardiff, develops VR products that help patients deal with pain, rehabilitation, stress and anxiety by distracting the brain. The distraction therapy technology allows the patient to be immersed in a different reality, helping the brain to reduce pain and ease the feelings of anxiety.

Steve Holt, director of Angels Invest Wales, said: “We are delighted to support the development of Rescape Innovation with match funding of £207,500 through the Wales Angel Co-investment Fund. This fund is now successfully encouraging new angel syndicates to come together to invest in Welsh businesses.”

“The Rescape investment syndicate has brought ten angel investors together and collectively they’ll bring a wealth of experience to the development of the business.”

Rescape’s VR product has already been used in 31 healthcare institutions across the UK, with a further 30 orders placed. With the recent business growth, the Welsh startup is responding to global interest in the technology, including enquiries from Norway, Australia and South Africa.

“This investment opens up an exciting new chapter for Rescape and puts us in the best position to expand our product offering to offer patients support through proven techniques like distraction therapy.”

Matt Wordley, chief executive of Rescape, commented: “This investment opens up an exciting new chapter for Rescape and puts us in the best position to expand our product offering to offer patients support through proven techniques like distraction therapy.”

“There are so many factors in establishing a quality tech product but thanks to the support we’ve received from Andrew Diplock, the other angel investors and Development Bank of Wales, we’re not only leading VR innovation in Wales, but across the UK and the world.”

“We’re proud to have started our business here in Wales and with the brilliant talent, infrastructure and support system, we’re able to grow and develop our products here too.”