Portfolio Company in the Spotlight: Optics11

Optics11 is a fast-growing high-tech company that makes measurement systems based on optical fiber technology, measuring nanoscale effects in difficult environments. Originating from the VU University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, prof. Davide Iannuzzi founded the company in 2011 together with Hans Brouwer. Building on so-called fiber-top technology, as the foundation for a range of measurement solutions.

These solutions can be applied in a wide range of fields. For example, the technology can be used to measure difference between normal and cancer cells and  is able to detect and predict cancer in early stadia. Furthermore, the technology is applied in industrial applications for energy applications and lifetime measurement in infrastructure, in order to measure faults and deterioration in structure and assets. Another application domain is Underwater Acoustics (OTADES) – (a fully optical thin reelable towed array) for detection of underwater movements (by underwater vehicles).

With Value Creation Capital’s capital and support, the company has managed to further develop and flourish to a point where they offer unique solutions outshining the competition.

The unique fiber sensing systems, as developed by Optics11, are a combination of two nanotechnologies: fiber-top technology and fiber interferometry. Using micro-manufacturing technology, Optics11 can fabricate Micro-ElectroMechanical Systems on the edges of an optical fiber. Combined with unique fiber-interferometric read-out technology, very precise measurements can be performed in the harshest environments, in the smallest spaces. Nanoscale measurements of vibrations, acoustics or forces are now made easy and accessible.

In 2016, Value Creation Capital noticed the opportunities of this technology and invested in the company. Since that time, VCC has actively supported  on growing the business and enhancing value creation within the company.

In 2022, Optics11 was split into two business units. The focus areas of the units were too different, and thus Optics11Life and Optics11Industry were realised. Optics11Life is focussing on the Life Sciences, while Optics11Industry is focussing on industry.

With the current trends in the medical world of using in-vitro 3D cell culture to develop new therapies, improve drug development processes and create better diagnostics, it is more important than ever to be able to make extremely accurate and precise measurements. Optics11Life’s Piuma/Chiaro product lines offer a perfect solution to measure, control and understand the mechano-biological state of the 3D cell cultures.

Furthermore, Optics11Life’s Pavone and Cuore product lines make it possible for researchers to monitor viability parameters such as oxygen, pH level and flow, all at the same time. The product lines also cater to needs concerning the measurement of end-to-end functionality measurements, such as measuring the force generated by engineered cardiac tissue.

With the current climate state, it’s of utmost importance that infrastructure is constantly monitored and that our energy system has a smart grid that can efficiently harvest green energy like sun, wind and nuclear power. To achieve this, we need technology that can make exact measurements and withstand extreme circumstances. Optics11Industry offers the perfect solution for this with its fiber optic sensing technologies. This technology is outstanding in its accuracy and reliability compared to any other fiber optic technology out there right now. Besides, it beats any electrical sensing technology in the market.

Optics11 has made an incredible transition from the small university spin-off into a growing company reaching a team of 100 professionals shortly and serving customers in 24 countries with her unique technology.

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