OUR TEAM

LUDOVIC LABAT

CEO

LUDOVIC LABAT

CEO

As a business leader, Ludovic has over 20 years’ experience in the medical device and technology industry in Europe, the USA and Asia Pacific with a range of global companies including Fortive, Danaher, Siemens, Tektronix and Invetech. He has a record of proven success in bringing innovations to market to generate profitable growth in global hi-tech and medical devices markets – in roles ranging from product ideation to go-to-market strategy.

Ludovic and his family share a passion for the ocean and sailing. He enjoys dinghy racing, on his own or with his wife – they competed together in the 2015 Tasar World Championships.

LYNDAL BORRELL

QUALITY MANAGER

LYNDAL BORRELL

QUALITY MANAGER

As a key person responsible for the Bionics Institute achieving ISO 9001 certification in 2019, Lyndal knows everything there is to know about quality management principles. She’s an expert in interpreting documentation and ensuring that the company adheres to the highest standards. Her focus on customer satisfaction ensures that each client’s needs are met at every stage of the project.

Lyndal enjoys reading for pleasure as well as for work. She’s also a swimmer and an occasional runner.

OWEN BURNS

R&D MANAGER

OWEN BURNS

R&D MANAGER

Owen is a systems engineer responsible for coordinating the engineering team throughout each project. He is an expert in biomechanical design for medical devices. Owen was the lead design engineer for the vagus nerve stimulation device developed to treat Crohn’s disease, which is due to start first-in-human trials soon.

Owen also led the project to design Neo-Bionica’s purpose-built facility – while renovating his own house. In his down time, he enjoys trail running, cycling and anything involving a mountain.

GARETH CLAY

SENIOR ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

GARETH CLAY

SENIOR ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

Gareth is a skilled electronics and software developer with a keen interest in documentation and pathways for regulatory compliance.

As a Product Development Engineer for Fisher and Paykel Heathcare in New Zealand, Gareth designed electronics and software for next generation AIRVO medical devices, specifically in the product development and manufacturing space.

Outside of work, you’ll find Gareth watching or playing sport (you name it, he’s played it), or at a gig enjoying some live music.

FARHAD GOODARZY

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

FARHAD GOODARZY

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Farhad is passionate about the neurotechnology and brain computer interfaces ecosystem, and digital healthcare. With a background in electrical engineering and neuroscience, Farhad has a unique understanding of the challenges faced by our clients and can connect them with the Neo-Bionica team member best suited to support them on their medical device commercialisation journey.

When he is not in the lab, you’ll find him playing soccer or catching up with friends and family.

MORVEN BROWN

EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT AND OFFICE COORDINATOR

MORVEN BROWN

EA AND OFFICE COORDINATOR

Morven is our EA extraordinaire, providing support to the CEO as well as the wider Neo-Bionica team. Having previously held a program delivery role in the education sector, Morven studied Education with Maths in the UK and has experience in grants, scheduling and events.

In her spare time, you’ll find Morven at early morning Pilates or filling up her bookshelves with novels.

MARK HARRISON

SENIOR ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

MARK HARRISON

SENIOR ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

Mark is involved in all aspects of electronics design and engineering – from designing circuitry to writing embedded software. On the MIRA project, he built the prototype device to deliver ongoing neurostimulation to the retina, which protects against progressive vision loss in degenerative eye diseases. Mark has also been instrumental in the development of the cochlear implant, the bionic eye, and many other devices.

Outside the lab, Mark applies his characteristic precision and accuracy to target archery, which he practices and teaches. He’s also involved in amateur radio.

EROL HARVEY

PROJECT ADVISER

EROL HARVEY

PROJECT ADVISER

The interim CEO of ACMD, Erol is an award-winning entrepreneur who has been involved in research commercialisation, product development and enabling technologies for more than 20 years. With technical expertise in micro and nanotech, biointerfaces and precision engineering, Erol is uniquely qualified to understand customers’ product development needs and help them develop manufacturable products.

To escape technology, Erol restores old Citroën 2CVs. He’s currently planning a 2CV raid with a convoy along the Anne Beadell Highway, an unsealed track across the Nullarbor.

DAVID HILL

BIOMEDICAL ENGINEER

DAVID HILL

BIOMEDICAL ENGINEER

David is a skilled Biomedical Engineer with research interests in design optimisation and process automation.

He completed a PhD examining automated preoperative planning and development of elaborate tools for bone tumour surgery as part of a research project between RMIT and Stryker, and has worked previously in aircraft maintenance and automotive manufacturing.

In his spare time, Dave enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, gardening, and attempting to reason with his brown labrador.

EDWARD SETTLE

QUALITY ASSURANCE LEAD

EDWARD SETTLE

QUALITY ASSURANCE LEAD

Previously holding various Regulatory and Quality roles at MAXONIQ and Lincoln Consulting, Edward is in charge of Neo-Bionica’s Quality Management System. He has a Master of Engineering (Biomedical with Business) from the University of Melbourne.

In his spare time, Ed enjoys cooking for his friends and exploring Melbourne’s restaurant scene.

KYLIE O’NEILL

FACILITIES MANAGER

KYLIE O’NEILL

LAB MANAGER

Kylie oversees the management and operation of Neo-Bionica’s cleanrooms, workshops and office spaces. She’s responsible for everything from equipment maintenance and procurement to staff training, occupational health and safety, and risk management. She’s also across ISO 9001 standards. Kylie’s input was crucial in designing and future-proofing Neo-Bionica’s purpose-built facility.

At home, Kylie loves upcycling furniture – refurbishing items that she finds online or rescues from hard rubbish.

DAVID KNEEN

CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT

DAVID KNEEN

CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT

Originally a deeply technical engineer and scientist, David transitioned post-MBA to strategic and executive leadership of global biotech developments, from Fortune 500s to start-ups. He brings 20 years of product development experience in medtech for clients across North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific. David has a record of strategic, commercial and operational leadership to effectively implement innovative technologies in high-value commercial applications.

David is an enthusiastic sailor, with a penchant for ocean racing that bemuses his warm, dry and well-rested friends and colleagues. At the 2021 Sydney to Hobart, David’s crew placed 15th on Line Honours aboard the Reichel-Pugh 46 ‘Hartbreaker’.

ROSS THOMAS

R&D DESIGNER, MANAGER OF ELECTRODE FABRICATION

ROSS THOMAS

R&D DESIGNER, MANAGER OF ELECTRODE FABRICATION

Ross is a skilled designer who has contributed to electrode design and fabrication of prototypes to treat Crohn’s disease and to prevent urinary incontinence. He has developed new fabrication methods and implemented quality control in fabrication processes. Ross has been closely involved with Neo-Bionica since the beginning, helping to conceptualise the company, plan the purpose-built facility, and set up and fit out the new workshops.

Outside work, Ross is a runner – covering around 100 km a week and competing in races from 1500 m races to half-marathons.

ALEX THOMPSON

ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

ALEX THOMPSON

ELECTRONICS ENGINEER

Alex is involved in the development and pre-clinical testing of novel neuromodulation devices, as well as designing electronics for new implantable prototypes. Previously, he developed a custom sound processor for bilateral cochlear implants to increase recipients’ sensitivity to interaural time differences. In that study, Alex was responsible for design of the sound processor and stimulator, electrophysiological recordings, and data analysis.

Alex’s interests are just as varied outside work. In addition to cycling, bikepacking and bushwalking, he is into beer brewing, coffee roasting and gardening.

JACQ WYLESTONE

TECHNICAL OFFICER

JACQ WYLESTONE

TECHNICAL OFFICER

Jacq has over 15 years’ experience in low volume design, production, and technical services across a variety of industries. An experienced blacksmith/metal fabricator, they helped conceptualise a metal art studio in Footscray and later became a resident artist and head instructor of the business. In 2019, Jacq completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Visual Art -Sculpture and Spatial Practice) at the University of Melbourne.

When not at work, Jacq enjoys visiting art galleries, oil painting in their home studio and exploring the outdoors by bike.

JENNY ZHOU

TECHNICAL OFFICER

JENNY ZHOU

TECHNICAL OFFICER

As a technician responsible for prototype design and fabrication, Jenny has worked on the trickiest of projects, from the 4-channel electrode in the mouse cochlear implant to the 44-channel electrode in the bionic eye. She also built Epi-Minder’s prototype for monitoring epileptic seizures, which is now in first-in-human trials.

Away from the lab, Jenny enjoys baking and cooking – and even running classes for her friends on making dumplings, bread and cakes. She also nurtures a garden, where she grows plants and vegetables.

OUR PURPOSE

Neo-Bionica enables clients – including businesses, researchers and clinicians – to turn their ideas into medical technologies that improve people’s lives.

We specialise in the product realisation of bioelectronic medical devices for use in targeted therapies and diagnostics.

Through our bioengineering expertise, fabrication skills and regulatory know-how, we develop implantable and wearable electronics and electrodes for neuromonitoring and neuromodulation devices.

OUR STORY

Neo-Bionica was conceived to fill a gap in medical device prototype manufacturing capability. We have the expertise to design robust implantable electrodes, the facilities to manufacture them, and the clinical connections to test them – all in one place.

We can also link local and international clients with Australian R&D incentive programs to help them develop life-changing medical technologies.

Our designers, engineers and regulatory experts have decades of experience in taking technology from early ideation through to pre-clinical and first-in-human studies. Devices based on their work include the cochlear implant, the bionic eye, and the Epi-Minder device.

Neo-Bionica is a joint initiative of the Bionics Institute and the University of Melbourne. Our purpose-built facility is located on the St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne campus in close proximity to leading clinicians.

OUR BOARD

LUSIA GUTHRIE

CHAIR

LUSIA GUTHRIE

CHAIR

Lusia is a medtech entrepreneur with over 35 years in the pharmaceutical and bioscience industries. She has extensive experience in forming companies, raising capital, developing products and bringing them to market. Lusia founded LBT Innovations to bring advanced technologies to the medical industry – and listed the company on the Australian stock exchange. She also led the company’s development of an automated plate assessment system for microbiologists, which was the first artificial intelligence diagnostic medical device to achieve US FDA class II approval.

When she’s not skimming journals, Lusia has a stack of books to read. She also has a keen interest in collecting and tasting whiskies, and is writing the history of her Polish family’s escape from Europe after World War 2.

ROBERT KLUPACS

NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

ROBERT KLUPACS

NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

With more than 30 years of international corporate experience in technology development, Robert has an extensive network in the global medtech sector. Currently the CEO of the Bionics Institute, Robert was a founder of Epi-Minder and a driving force behind the launch of Neo-Bionica. He also helped Bionic Vision Technologies raise US$18 million to fund clinical studies of the bionic eye. A registered patent attorney, Robert has deep knowledge of intellectual property and research commercialisation. He has also worked with international companies to set up special-purpose entities in Australia to take advantage of the local regulatory landscape.

In his spare time, Robert is chair of BioAutism, a charity supporting autism research. He started running to take part in fundraising events, and has now completed five half-marathons. He’s also a cyclist and a triathlete.

HEATHER ST JOHN

NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

HEATHER ST JOHN

NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

A technology commercialisation expert with a track record of securing large-scale grant funding, Heather has a deep understanding of medical innovation and the global medical device market. In addition to founding the Monash Institute of Medical Engineering to tackle significant unmet clinical needs, Heather created a seed fund to establish a pipeline of medtech products. She also has first-hand experience commercialising a novel biomaterial that has been used in millions of life-sustaining devices, including establishing ISO 13485 quality management systems and supporting progression through US FDA approvals. She is now Director of Research Enterprise and Development at the University of Melbourne.

When not working, Heather likes spending time in wild places – by a creek in the bush, in among the native plants in her garden, and at live music venues.

KAREN CAMPITELLI

COMPANY SECRETARY

KAREN CAMPITELLI

COMPANY SECRETARY

Karen manages corporate governance for Neo-Bionica. She’s responsible for the legal side of things – like overseeing agreements and making sure new contracts with external partners are airtight. Karen also has valuable expertise in medtech IP management and commercial strategy.

When she’s not in the office, Karen gets out into nature – walking on the beach and in the bush. She’s even completed the 100 km Oxfam trek (although it’s not something she plans to do again).