If you are a doctor or frequent visitor to Optim Orthopedics, you might have already heard of Micro C Imaging. The device is a light, portable, surgically ergonomic handheld camera and synchronized receptor and by holding its handle, a surgeon can direct fluoroscopy and digital imagery to the extremity. In laymen’s terms? It’s a hand-held x-ray. In further terms? It’s pretty darn revolutionary.
Beyond the device itself, Micro C has gained attention as an ATDC Accelerate company and Savannah startup that not only won a couple of local pitch competitions, raised $250,000 in seed money, then another $700,000 – not bad for a company that is just 14 months old. But beyond the accolades and incredibly impressive track record, Micro C is also an incredible team that is transforming innovative medical technology, completely possible due to the leadership of Chief Medical Officer & Co-Founder, Gregory Kolovich, MD, MPH, BSEEE and Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder, Evan Ruff, MBA, BSCmpE.
We sat down with Chief Marketing Officer, Murem Sharpe, to talk about Micro C’s journey, as well as the exciting possibilities of what comes next.
Creative Coast: Talk to us a bit about the decision to start Micro C; what need or gap were you filling?
Murem Sharpe: Dr. Greg Kolovich MD, MPH, is a practicing orthopedic surgeon, specializing in hand, upper extremity, and microsurgery. His invention of the Micro C was driven by his own dissatisfaction with the 50+ year old, bulky X-ray “C-arm” equipment he had to use during surgeries, and especially challenging ones such as hand and finger reattachments. The objective is to offer a fluoroscopy solution for both clinical and surgical applications that is faster, safer (as to radiation emission) and more agile than current technology. In addition, providing extra features such as digital images – still, video and infra-red, make the Micro C a highly versatile device.
Creative Coast: Why did you decide to start Micro C here in Savannah as opposed to elsewhere?
MS: Dr. Kolovich is based in Savannah with Optim Orthopedics. Given his active surgery and clinic practice, it was practical to start up here. He believes it is essential that his every-day engagement with patient cases makes him a better founder/inventor. Since he is a Georgia Tech engineering graduate, he found that the ATDC (Advanced Technology Development Center) of Georgia Tech had programs here for entrepreneurs, including the Startup Bootcamp, in which he participated in early 2016.
Creative Coast: What about Savannah do you feel is a benefit to folks starting their entrepreneurial venture?
MS: Since early feedback from customers is key for any successful venture, there were orthopedic surgeons, and especially hand surgeons here, with whom the team could engage from “day one”. Most Savannah-based ventures can, similarly, find potential customers for early feedback, testing, and adoption. In addition, while the investor community here is not large, the advantage of being in a small city means that the entrepreneur may personally know investors, making it more likely the investors will support the venture.
Read more about the original article and Creative Coast’s Interview with Murem Sharpe