Cleveland HeartLab, which makes a biomarker-based heart test, has rebuffed an acquisition offer and instead taken an Ohio tax credit to keep growing the company, according to Ohio government officials.
The company received a six-year tax credit from the state of Ohio that’s valued at nearly $423,000. State officials claimed that without the tax credit, HeartLab would have accepted an acquisition offer from a Massachusetts company. CEO Jake Orville and HeartLab investors including Glengary and Second Generation declined to discuss the offer.
HeartLab has quickly experienced major growth. Its Medicaid reimbursement and customer base for its cardiac inflammation test “exploded” about this time last year. Plus, the number of employees skyrocketed from eight to about 70 since it started two years ago. The Cleveland Clinic spinoff plans to double the number of employees in the next three years.
Its Ohio tax credit will go toward a new office and research and development space in Cleveland’s HealthTech Corridor, an area on the city’s East Side that local officials are marketing to technology and biomedical firms.
Orville called the new location “our long-term home” and said he would lease between 25,000 and 30,000 square feet, roughly triple the company’s existing space.
Most of the jobs HeartLab plans to add in the next few years fall into three categories: technologists who operate the company’s clinical laboratories, sales and marketing employees, and managers, Orville said.
Cleveland HeartLab is a clinical reference laboratory that does an array of lipid and inflammation tests for clients. The company’s CardioMPO test measures a biomarker that indicates cardiac inflammation and is called myeloperoxidase. A high level of MPO indicates that a patient has a higher risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.