Lightship Raises $40 Million for Virtual Clinical Trial Platform

Lightship, a virtual clinical trials platform, announced that it had raised $40 million in a new funding round.

The funding round has been led by Define Ventures and Brook Byers, with participation from Khosla Ventures, McKesson Ventures, and Marc Benioff’s TIME Ventures.

According to the company, the new funds will help drive its expansion, including internationally, with a new office opening in London, United Kingdom.

This investment round follows the $20 million of funding that Lightship announced in February 2020 to improve access and diversity in clinical trials. The company’s end-to-end model increases access to clinical studies for patients everywhere and helping bring more innovative medicines to market.

With its end-to-end model, Lightship delivers operational excellence to running decentralized clinical trials at scale.

David MacMurchy, CEO at Lightship, said: “Today, only a small proportion of the global patient population has access to clinical trials as a treatment option. This new investment, plus the expansion of our team, enables Lightship to grow internationally and continue our journey to give patients everywhere the opportunity to participate in clinical research.

“This is such an exciting, fast-growing market, and at Lightship, we have amazing teams committed to our mission and going beyond expectations for patients and sponsors of clinical studies.”

Lynne Chou O’Keefe, Founder and Managing Partner at Define Ventures, said: “It’s exciting to be part of the Lightship journey and to see the industry embracing the shift to decentralized clinical trials. It’s clear that patients want more choice, and the company’s model responds to their needs and enhances the experience for those participating in clinical research.”

“We’ve seen outstanding growth and progress in decentralized clinical trials, and there’s enormous potential for more innovation in the US and many other markets,” said Dave Schulte, SVP and Managing Director of McKesson Ventures.

Digital Health companies in the first half (1H) of 2021 raised $15 billion in VC funding. Funding activity increased by 138% during 1H 2021, compared to $6.3 billion raised in 1H 2020.