SCRA's SC LAUNCH Invests $200,000 in Upstate Start-Up Invenca (Formerly iTography)

September 23, 2008

CHARLESTON, SC – September 23, 2008 – Greer-based Invenca  (formerly iTography) received a $200,000 investment from SCRA’s SC Launch! today at The Greenville Chamber of Commerce. Invenca provides innovative separations technology to analytical labs and industrial and manufacturing organizations. Invenca’s products reduce the cost of high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and enable its use for purification. Invenca is headed by Elizabeth Cates, Ph.D., the company’s Chief Science and Technology officer.

Dr. Cates and Dr. Brian Morin, CEO of Innegrity LLC, worked together earlier in their careers in a research capacity at Milliken & Company. After forming Innegrity, Morin came across another technology of interest from Clemson University. With this technology he formed iTography and began discussions with Cates. Along with her research focus, she had expertise in product development and marketing – that’s how Invenca began.

“The first investment we received from SC Launch of $50,000 funded lab research, enabling us to keep our staff small and to utilize our time to take the right path,” said Cates. “The remaining SC Launch! investment of $150,000 will allow us to fund more work, plus recruit and fill important, full-time management positions. Cates says she can now expand the company aggressively.  “With this SC Launch! investment, we have solidified our business plans and we’ll launch our product in 2009,” she said.

The initial Invenca product line will have applications in proteomics: the study of proteins and their functions. They are based on small, man-made molecules to treat human disease or relieve symptoms. Cates says that “proteins represent a more sophisticated way to treat disease because they work with existing body processes – treating the body the way its likes best.”

src=img/Mahoney_crop.jpg“We are pleased that Invenca is the newest SC Launch! portfolio company. Today’s event further demonstrates how collaboration among South Carolina businesses and SC university research foundations commercialize important academic research and help strengthen the Knowledge Economy within the state,” said Bill Mahoney, SCRA CEO. (pictured right)

The Invenca ceremony followed today’s Advantage Greenville Economic Impact Forum. Advantage Greenville is an arm of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce that focuses on enhancing the region’s competitive position and increasing per capita income.  Bill Gartner of Clemson University, Tim Reed of GoPark Partners and Margin Holdings and Peter Waldschmidt of Gnoso led a discussion among Advantage Greenville members focused on entrepreneurism in the Upstate.

About Invenca

Invenca is a startup company dedicated to reducing the cost of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and to enabling the use of HPLC for purification in markets where it has been previously cost-prohibitive.  We intend to do this through the introduction of novel fiber-based HPLC media, based on technology licensed from Clemson University.

About SCRA (

SCRA is a global leader in applied research and commercialization services with offices in Anderson, Charleston and Columbia. SCRA collaborates to advance technology. SCRA provides technology-based solutions with assured outcomes on behalf of industry, government, and research universities like Clemson University, the University of South Carolina and the Medical University of South Carolina.

About SC Launch! (

SC Launch!, an SCRA collaboration, assists entrepreneurial start-up companies with up-front counseling, seed-funding, and access to a powerful resource network. The SC  Launch! mission is to help generate knowledge economy jobs in South Carolina, enhance the state’s quality of life and provide opportunity for all South Carolinians in the new economy.  For more information please visit

SC Launch! is a trademark of SC Launch!, Inc.   SCRA is a registered trademark of SCRA.