$900 million cloud startup Benchling just launched a new product to help companies ramp up COVID research

  • The $900 million life sciences cloud startup Benchling launched a new product called Benchling Validated Cloud.
  • Scientists can use Benchling's product for research and regulatory compliance, including in coronavirus testing and research.
  • Benchling is backed by investors like Andreessen Horowitz and Thrive Capital.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Cloud startup Benchling just launched a new product to help life sciences companies make better decisions in research and development, particularly as firms ramp up coronavirus testing and vaccination strategies.

Benchling, which has over 400 customers and has raised $111.8 million from investors like Andreessen Horowitz and Thrive Capital at a $900 million valuation, according to PitchBook, builds a cloud specifically for life sciences companies. 

Its new product, called Benchling Validated Cloud, helps firms comply with regulations while doing R&D and testing, and includes a suite of applications to track and analyze data, too. Customer New England Biolabs is already using the tool for its research and regulatory compliance requirements. 

Many of Benchling's customers are working with the cloud for the first time, and Benchling said the transition helps them speed up their work.

"The complexity of the work is so great that old school pen and paper really doesn't cut it," Saji Wickramasekara, CEO and cofounder of Benchling, told Insider. "The work has gotten to a point that needs modern tools. When knowledge is living inside someone's head or in a paper notebook, it's hard to see organizations working together."

Government agencies, university research groups, and commercial labs have used Benchling's products to scale up their COVID-19 research and testing, the company said. Its cloud can help manage the operations of getting people tested for the virus and so far, over 1.1 million tests have been run using its tools, the company said.

Read more: How Moderna is working with Dell's Boomi to become more efficient as it races to distribute its COVID-19 vaccine

Benchling is also building machine learning and AI tools to help customers make decisions and gather insights. For instance, scientists may use Benchling to design experiments to discover new drugs or figure out toxicity in medicines, and the system will detect anomalies, make forecasts, or recommend ways to make their next experiments better.

"It's a critical piece of the puzzle for scientists using Benchling now," Sriram Krishnan, head of engineering at Benchling, told Insider. "They can run analytics, share dashboards with collaborators, and have a visual representation of all the data that's actually stored."

Source: Read Full Article