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Seaspire Raises $3 Million for Octopus-Inspired Skincare Brand

June 21, 2022
June 21, 2022
Stephanie Harlacher via Unsplash

Seaspire Skincare co-founders raised $3 million in seed funding to create skincare with a biotech ingredient inspired by the octopus.

WHO: Researchers from Northeastern's Center for Research Innovation (CRI), Camille Martin, PhD, and Leila Deravi, PhD, founded Seaspire Skincare in 2019. In their academic research on cephalopods, they discovered the organic natural biomolecule Xanthochrome and found that this molecule outperforms commonly used materials in skincare products in both safety and performance

WHY: The funding will be used to develop and launch the start-up's first direct-to-consumer beauty brand focused on addressing pigmentation disorders and skin hydration using Xanthochrome. The brand is planned to launch in the spring of 2023.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: "I'm from New York, born and raised, and I've always had a fascination with the beauty industry," Camille Martin told Bizjournals. "In fact, my desire to pursue my undergraduate studies and continue my advanced degree in chemistry was for the sole purpose to work at a multinational beauty company and their product development."

"As soon as you say 'animal-derived,' it's almost like a red light stop," she said. "We made a bio-identical version of the molecule that is found in nature. Hence the name of our company: Seaspire, for our sea-inspired technology."

"Although we are not using materials from the oceans directly, we are inspired by these amazing color changing animals," Martin added. "And we want to make sure that throughout our entire design process, that we're considerate of the types of materials that we need."

DETAILS:

  • Seaspire raised $3 million in seed funding. Existing investor MIT's The Engine led the round with participation by MassMutual through its MM Catalyst Fund, MassVentures, Safar Partners, Alumni Ventures, and angel investors doctors Daniel Siegel and Susan Bryde.
  • The latest fundraise brings total capital raised to $4 million.
  • Beauty entrepreneur and former celebrity makeup artist Lauren Napier serves as Chief Brand Officer.
  • The company is based in greater Boston with a commercial team in New York City.
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