KeraLink Sharpens Focus on Reversing Corneal Blindness Outside the U.S.
SEATTLE AND BALTIMORE (February 4, 2019) – CorneaGen, a mission-driven company committed to transforming how corneal surgeons treat and care for the cornea, and KeraLink International, a global leader in corneal transplantation services, supplies and grafts for transplant, have signed a final agreement for CorneaGen to acquire KeraLink’s domestic eye bank operations and related assets.
KeraLink will continue to operate as an independent, non-profit organization, with its sights set on making vision-restoring treatments for people wth corneal blindness possible anywhere in the world. KeraLink’s goal is to provide better options to more than 10 million people who currently live without sight, because corneal transplant tissue is not available, not affordable or surgeons’ skills are not sufficient.
Effective March 1, CorneaGen will absorb all of KeraLink’s operating locations, enter into affiliate agreements with KeraLink’s affiliates in New Mexico and San Antonio, and employ most, if not all, of KeraLink’s operations personnel at their current locations. CorneaGen also will support KeraLink’s efforts by providing access to tissue, facilities and personnel.
“CorneaGen and KeraLink are an ideal match because of our shared mission to eliminate corneal blindness around the world,” said KeraLink President and CEO Douglas J. Furlong. “KeraLink’s five-year goal is to restore sight to at least 50,000 people with corneal blindness for whom treatment is currently not a viable option; many of them are children and young adults living in developing countries. We expect the 50,000 person target to grow exponentially as innovations fostered by KeraLink take hold.”
Through the acquisition, CorneaGen will gain efficiencies of scale in reaching the U.S. market, including the ability to serve an additional eight percent of domestic corneal surgeons and expand its offering of surgical products. The acquisition also brings new partnerships with academia and industry, which will increase CorneaGen’s access to important discoveries in the treatment and prevention of corneal disease.
“This consolidation of CorneaGen’s and KeraLink’s eye bank operations will grow the pools of tissue and talent, improving access for surgeons and patients across America. We also expect efficiencies gained through the larger organization to free up resources to pursue research and innovation,” said Monty Montoya, president and CEO of CorneaGen. “We are looking toward a future for prevention and treatment of corneal blindness that eliminates the need for tissue transplants.”
About KeraLink International
Committed to honoring the gift of donation by providing high-quality ocular tissue for transplantation, education, and research, KeraLink International is a non-profit 501(c)3 charitable organization with the mission of reversing corneal blindness globally. KeraLink, a global leader in corneal transplantation services, supplies exceptional pre- punched cornea and sterile grafts, in addition to supporting the latest research and providing training opportunities for surgeons to help restore sight to as many people as possible. KeraLink is also proud to provide charitable tissue both domestically and internationally to patients in need.
CorneaGen is a mission-driven company committed to transforming how corneal surgeons treat and care for the cornea. Based in Seattle, the company is innovating the next generation of cornea care, from new medical devices and biologics to treatments and interventions. CorneaGen supports corneal surgeons and their patients with a spectrum of services, including the latest in innovative products, delivery of the highest quality tissue, surgeon education, and advocacy for patient access and reimbursement policies. https://corneagen.com