DeepVerge, an Irish-founded, London-listed scientific research group is to create 60 highly-skilled jobs in Co Cork.
It has announced a major expansion at its Fermoy-based scientific data management company Rinocloud with the development of a new artificial intelligence (AI) centre of excellence. The company is recruiting for roles in data science, physics and microbiology.
Fin Murray, managing director of Rinocloud and chief operating office at DeepVerge, said the new centre would pay a key role in the real-time detection of pathogens such as E-coli and the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which leads to Covid.
The new facility, which is to be located in Moorepark Technology Centre, includes laboratory and engineering production units to uncover such pathogens in water and wastewater systems.
Rinocloud is one of three divisions within DeepVerge (formerly Integumen) that cover environmental monitoring, life sciences and data/AI.
The company, which was acquired by DeepVerge in a €3.5 million deal in 2019, is a data management company that has developed a remote monitoring sensor system that conveys data from samples and uses AI to process large volumes of information to detect pathogens. Its technology is used by among others, the Environmental Protection Agency.
“Water-based epidemiology is not new and will not end with this pandemic. Examining wastewater for evidence of SARS-CoV-2 is an internationally recognised tool used by many governments’ to assess the rate of infection across populations in the community,” said DeepVerge founder and chief executive Gerry Brandon, commenting on the Rinocloud expansion
In addition to environmental monitoring, Rinocloud also works with DeepVerge’s microbiology business known as Labskin, which has developed laboratory-grown human skin – on using the AI model it has developed to anaylse skin to detect various microbes and DNA.
DeepVerge, which is headquartered in Cambridge, England has a market cap of approximately £60 million. The group, which is listed on the AIM in London, has just agreed a major deal with China Resources Group to form a joint venture for the manufacture and sale of environmental monitoring equipment. CRG is a Chinese state-owned conglomerate that reported revenues of $91 billion in 2019.
It also recently launched a new ‘Skin Trust Club’ service that promises customised skincare routine derived from a home test kit and app which builds a complete picture of an individual’s skin microbiome and the impact of their local surroundings.
Overall, DeepVerge employs more than 90 people and has over 60 patents. It also has facilities in York, Delaware and Shanghai.
“Core to all the business we do is data. We generate and curate our own data – from water contaminants, from skin microbiome and so on – to continuously teach AI to glean insights from it,” said Mr Murray.
He said there is huge potential for the business to grow locally, noting the launch by the World Health Organisation this week of a new global hub in Germany for pandemic and epidemic intelligence to predict, prevent, detect, prepare for and respond to health threats.
“With the life sciences business alone we count many of the top companies globally as clients, including Unilever. We expect this to grow substantially along with the monitoring work we do,” Mr Murray said.