Mercia EIS Funds

Richard di Benedetto appointed as Chair of Braintrain2020 to lead the next Series A fundraise

Richard di Benedetto, the current President of Aetna International; one of the world’s largest health benefits businesses has been appointed as a director and non-executive chairman of the Braintrain2020 board.

UK-based Braintrain2020 is the organisation behind SleepCogni – a first-in-class patented medical device providing a combined diagnostic and treatment system to help clinicians identify and treat sleep disorders.

di Benedetto’s appointment, along with his pledge of a personal six-figure investment, strategically coincides with the commencement of a £4.8million Series A fundraise for the commercialisation of SleepCogni. Ahead of that process, SleepCogni’s main investors, led by investment firm Mercia Fund Managers, have also committed to providing follow-on funding in the next investment round. This continued support sends a strong message to future investors, regarding the strength and potential of the SleepCogni offering.

di Benedetto brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to his new role having spent over 20 years leading healthcare companies. Alongside this new appointment, he will continue in his role at Aetna International where he will soon be part of a new executive team when the $69billion trade sale of Aetna to CVS Health is complete. Prior to joining Aetna International, Richard served as CEO at Euromedic International – one of Europe’s largest private equity owned providers of diagnostic services, labs and cancer treatments. He also spent 15 years with GE Healthcare, most recently as President and CEO of their Eastern and African growth markets.

Richard di Benedetto said: “As chairman of Braintrain2020, and also as a personal investor in SleepCogni, I see an enormous growth opportunity ahead of us with the potential to help many people live healthier lives.

“Demand for healthcare across the world has never been so great. Populations are increasing and ageing, people are better informed, technology continues to develop at pace, and there is an unprecedented increase in the prevalence of lifestyle-related diseases. Innovative approaches are required to meet these evolving demands and I passionately believe that we need to shift our focus from treatment to prevention.

“For this reason, I am very excited about SleepCogni. There is overwhelming clinical evidence which shows that disrupted sleep is a major factor in many physical and mental illnesses. If we can help people to rebuild healthy sleep patterns, we can improve their overall health and ultimately their quality of life.”

Richard Mills, Braintrain2020 founder and CEO, said: “Attracting such an experienced leader in the healthcare industry to the role of chairman is testament to our achievements to date and how far we have come in such a short period of time. We are delighted to have Richard’s backing and shared vision in place as we commence our fundraise and we have no doubt that his experience and knowledge will be instrumental in guiding and strengthening the management team as we look to commercialise SleepCogni into the US sleep clinic market in 2020.”