UAVenture Capital Fund Invests in Automatic Eyeglass Prescription Technology

UAVenture Capital Fund (UAVC), a Tucson based venture capital fund dedicated to the University of Arizona commercialization of discovery products, technology and services, today announced its seventh portfolio investment and the second investment from Fund II.

The Fund has invested in iCrx, Inc. a Wyant College of Optical Sciences technology that will introduce a compact automatic phoropter utilizing laser technology designed to instantly determine a required eyewear prescription.  The phoropter is the common name for an ophthalmic testing device, also called a refractor, invented in 1921.  It is still commonly used by eye care professionals during a prescription eye examination and contains different lenses used for refraction of the eye during sight testing.  Such testing measures an individual's refractive error and determines his or her eyeglass prescription.

The new iCrx invention is a hand-held device that can produce an objective and accurate eyeglass prescription in approximately 20 seconds without any subjective input from the viewer.

The invested funds from UAVC will be utilized to further develop and miniaturize the technology into a commercial product to be used in kiosks and/or in rapid screening of large patient populations especially in developing countries that lack sufficient facilities and specialist doctors.

Dr. Gholam Peyman, an ophthalmologist, retinal surgeon, and professor of both Clinical Ophthalmology and Basic Medical Sciences at the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix, Arizona invented the original iCrx technology.  Dr. Peyman is also the Research Director for the Department of Ophthalmology and is best known for his invention of LASIK eye surgery.  University of Arizona Wyant College of Optical Sciences faculty Dr. Nasser Peyghambarian and Dr. James Schweigerling, co-inventors of the technology, have been designing the compact phoropter prototype.  Several students at the University of Arizona are also working on the project.

For further information contact:

Fletcher J. McCusker, CEO

fjmccusker@uaventurecap.com

UAVenture Capital

607 North Sixth Avenue

Tucson, Arizona 85705

 

About UAVC:

UAVenture Capital Fund II, LLC is a Tucson based investment fund designed specifically to help finance University of Arizona connected enterprises including the commercialization of faculty led innovations originating at the University of Arizona. The fund provides early stage capital to companies where the science or service array was pioneered by faculty members, students and/or colleagues at the University of Arizona, one of the top research universities in the world.

 

About University of Arizona James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences:

The University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences is one of the world’s premier educational and research institutions in optics and photonics.  Its focus is on educating outstanding students with a broad foundation in all areas of optics and on providing practical experience while developing highly competitive technical skills. The research programs include optical engineering, fundamental optical physics, photonics, and image science.  The College provides unique opportunities to pursue cutting-edge applications of optics in real-life systems.  Graduates become professors, scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs, working in academia, industry, government and business around the globe.

UAVenture Capital Fund, LLC, a University of Arizona dedicated venture capital fund, closes its fourth investment

UA Venture Capital Fund, LLC (UAVC), the Tucson based venture capital fund dedicated to University of Arizona commercialization of discovery products and services, today announced its fourth portfolio startup company investment.

The Fund has participated in funding a seed round of growth capital for Qwick, Inc. (www.qwick.com). Qwick connects hospitality businesses to dependable, reliable and highly rated workers in real-time.  Qwick has developed a technology platform which allows hotels and restaurants to locate temporary staff instantly by posting an open shift.  

Qwick offers the hospitality professionals on the platform flexibility and control over their schedules, and the ability to choose who they want to work for. Businesses benefit by being able to fill shifts in real-time with a qualified and vetted workforce at a fraction of the cost of traditional staffing agencies.  Launched in Phoenix less than a year ago, the company has already registered over 4,000 hospitality professionals and over 130 hotels, catering companies, event venues, restaurants, and bars. The invested funds from UAVC will be utilized to continue Qwick’s expansion into additional markets.

Blaine Light, the company’s COO and co-founder, is a University of Arizona College of Engineering graduate (Summa Cum Laude) and a McGuire Entrepreneurship Program graduate.  He previously helped launch Uber in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. “I'm enjoying applying what I learned at Uber to the Food and Beverage space. I'm inspired by all the people we are helping, and I love hearing about the extra income they are earning in their downtime." said Blaine.

Jamie Baxter, a former Global Technology Director for a publicly traded international advisory firm is the company’s CEO and founder. “We are pleased to have UAVenture Capital Fund as local financial investors and mentors.  What UAVC is doing for the University of Arizona commercialization efforts is remarkable and much needed. We are proud to be a part of their investment portfolio.”

“We are absolutely thrilled to be involved with Qwick”, said Fletcher McCusker, CEO and founder of UAVenture Capital Fund.  These are the kinds of extremely bright and intelligent young entrepreneurs with disruptive technologies that we want to help keep in Arizona.”


For further information contact:

Fletcher J. McCusker

UA Venture Capital Fund, LLC

fjmccusker@uaventurecap.com

(520) 400-9934

About UA Venture Capital, LLC

Formed in 2017, UAVC is a venture capital fund founded by Fletcher J. McCusker and Michael N. Deitch, and dedicated to the commercialization of University of Arizona innovation.  The fund makes early stage investments in emerging and disruptive technologies formulated by UofA researchers, faculty and students (www.uaventurecapital.com).