Omeza LLC is a biomedical technology company based in Sarasota, FL founded by Thomas Gardner. Tom was inspired to start the company to improve the quality of life for those with chronic wounds.
Since Omeza opened its first office in 2018 with one employee, the company has grown to 9 full-time employees, and is organizing clinical trials in preparation for anticipated FDA clearance at the beginning of 2021.
In late 2018-2020, OMEZA achieved the following key milestones and is poised for success in 2021.
- Launched first prototype consumer product online and in selected regional independent pharmacies, making available OMEZA's patented Omega-3 oil developed to strengthen and moisturize vulnerable skin.
- Successful $7M+ capital raise from local investors & appointment of a Board with the credentials to support OMEZA in achieving its strategic growth goals.
- Established research, analytical, manufacturing, and operational facilities as well as corporate headquarters in the Sarasota area, utilizing best-of-breed local talent and resources.
In 2016, Thomas Gardner, a seasoned healthcare executive, crossed paths with a former colleague from Procter & Gamble, Griscom (Chip) Bettle, a renowned chemical engineer. In 2017, Bettle joined Omeza as a minority owner, bringing his intellectual property and expertise in Research & Development to Omeza. Omeza's mission is to restore and maintain a meaningful and satisfying quality of life for vulnerable populations lacking skin integrity. Partnering with Dr. Desmond Bell, DPM, CWS, a leader in limb salvage and lower extremity wound care, they developed the core ingredient formulation of the Omeza product line. Gardner noted, "while, in the early stage, we've been able to move quickly and efficiently toward market clearance and commercial launch leveraging resources from the Sarasota region. We've been able to utilize the expertise, industry experience and private financial resources of the Sarasota community to build a company with global potential dedicated to solving the problem of serious, chronic wounds -- helping patients get their lives back.”
In 2017, while working with SCORE, Gardner presented to University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee's (USFSM) MBA cohort and collaborated with a graduate student group to develop an initial financial forecast. That group of students - one of whom is now President and COO Sarah Kitlowski – continued to work with Omeza and chose to use the early-stage company as their capstone project, developing a comprehensive business and go-to-market plan. SCORE Mentor Pat Loftus was one of the judges at the capstone presentation, where the Omeza project took first honors.
Loftus has remained connected to the company throughout, including a 7-month SCORE mentoring relationship assisting them with strategic planning, key relationship building and preparations for their second capital raise. “Our SCORE Mentor Pat Loftus has provided tremendous support during this start-up period,” states Kitlowski. CEO Tom Gardner noted that "Pat Loftus is thoughtful, articulate, and mindful of the various considerations needed to create a strategic plan and supplement operations. She also supported corporate compliance matters and identification and mitigation of risks."
SCORE Mentor Pat Loftus Quote:
“SCORE is proud to be a part of OMEZA's startup and early-stage success as part of the Sarasota-based ecosystem."