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October 05, 2023 | Tom Ballard

Winter Innovations announces completion of its fully subscribed seed funding round

The funding infusion will enable the start-up to add commercial expertise to its team and expand into new strategic markets across the U.S. for its EasyWhip flagship product.

Winter Innovations Inc., a Knoxville-based medical device start-up focused on commercialization of its two-part needle technology and innovative methods of stitching, has announced completion of its fully subscribed seed funding round.

The financing, which was completed amid a challenging climate where many venture and angel funds were not making new investments, will fuel commercial growth for EasyWhip®, its flagship product.

“We are immensely proud of reaching this pivotal fundraising milestone, especially given the tough fundraising landscape,” said Preston Dishner, the company’s Chief Operating Officer. “The support we’ve received extends not only from investors within our home state of Tennessee but also from out-of-state backers, spanning from Massachusetts to Indiana (and) down to Florida.”

EasyWhip® is a patented and Food and Drug Administration-cleared two-part needle designed to enhance the speed and consistency of stitching in ligament and tendon surgeries. It is indicated for use in approximation and/or ligation of soft tissues, including the use of allograft tissue for orthopedic surgeries. The innovative device has applications in sports medicine, including procedures involving the anterior cruciate ligament and biceps tendon, as well as in foot and ankle surgeries, such as those involving the Achilles, peroneal, and tibial tendons.

“Winter Innovations introduced EasyWhip® to the market with a targeted launch in 2022,” said Chief Executive Officer Lia Winter. “The feedback from our initial surgeon users has been overwhelmingly positive, confirming the device’s value proposition in terms of improved
ease of use, efficiency, and versatility. EasyWhip® has already been utilized in several hundred ligament and tendon repair and reconstruction surgeries, highlighting its versatility and broad range of applications within existing clinical indications.”

Dishner said the funding infusion will enable Winter Innovations to add commercial expertise to its team and expand into new strategic markets across the U.S., while also addressing unmet customer needs through the expansion of the company’s product line.

We first met Winter, who co-founded the company with fellow graduate student Dishner, in late 2017 when she won the “Vol Court Speaker Series & Pitch Competition” hosted by the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. We have subsequently posted dozens of articles over the next six years as she won numerous pitch competitions for student entrepreneurs (click here for those items).

In 2022, Winter Innovations was first runner-up in the PYA-sponsored “Tom Ballard Innovation Award,” receiving a prize package of services from PYA valued at $10,000.

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