Health / Digital Health

Flex and Cellnovo partner for world’s first connected

mobile diabetes management system 

The inspiration for the world’s first e-connected mobile diabetes management system came from the most unlikely of places: Space. Dr. Julian Shapley, Cellnovo’s Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, was working with astronauts at NASA in the United States when he became intrigued by the properties of a paraffin wax pump used in satellites. Its high level of accuracy and precision in the delivery of fluids seemed well adapted for use in healthcare applications.  
After much research and experimentation, Cellnovo was created with a mission of using leading-edge technology to help people with diabetes to take control and live their lives to the fullest. 

Business Objective 

Scaling from start-up volumes to mass production is a test many young companies face, and it is exactly this challenge that the Franco-Welsh medical device company was confronted with in 2014. Cellnovo originally set up a production facility in South Wales. Quickly, demand outstripped supply and the company struggled to keep pace with orders for its product. After a successful IPO in Paris in 2015, Cellnovo set its sights on industrializing production to enable it to meet this growing demand. Being able to reliably supply the disposable insulin cartridges in greater volumes was key to success.

Read Case Study


  1. Customer
  2. Product
    A wearable insulin pump connected to a touchscreen controller with an integrated blood-glucose meter
  3. Services
    Design; Engineering; New Product Introduction; Precision Plastics - Molding  & Cleanroom; PCBA and box-build; Supply Chain Management; Volume Manufacturing
Using real-time data and an innovative insulin-delivery system to create the world’s first connected mobile diabetes management system.



Innovation-led manufacturing

The highly-experienced engineering team, working closely with Cellnovo, assessed the suitability of the existing designs for volume manufacture, and where necessary, helped re-design components. 

Unit cost was also a major consideration, and the design team’s understanding of materials, manufacturing processes and medical device regulations ensured the new specifications were optimized for cost, reliability and performance.   

Improvements in the manufacturing process for the lead frame and the pinned circuit board immediately led to capacity improvements.

Flex improved the supply chain relationship and years of regulatory experience in manufacturing FDA approved medical devices for the US market was also a huge benefit to Cellnovo.

 Flex Precision Plastics


Scaling production 

Partnering with Flex enables Cellnovo to focus on its core competencies: Innovation and the differentiation of its product, and bringing superior value to patients, their families and care teams.

It also means Cellnovo is now capable of delivering a 12-fold increase in the number of insulin cartridges produced per annum. In 2019, a second production line is planned to go live at Flex in Timisoara, Romania, which would dramatically increase Cellnovo’s insulin cartridge production.

Because Flex produces medical devices to the highest international quality standards, Cellnovo’s management team are assured that the production complies with international regulatory and safety standards.

Flex Precision Plastics


Related Articles

Age of Intelligence™

Double-click to edit alt text and insert image

In this new age, smart connected devices don’t just hand over data to their human users, who then must engage more software or analysis to make decisions. Intelligent things direct human action or interaction. Learn more 

From our blogs

Double-click to edit alt text and insert image

4 Reasons for Using Wearables in Clinical Trials. Determining the right IoT approach—whether multi-partner or end-to-end—is essential to successfully bringing smart products to market. Identify the pitfalls associated with launching smart products. Read more

Case Study

Double-click to edit alt text and insert image

A leading drug delivery provider turned to Flex and its  Sketch-to-Scale®solutions to design and manufacture the world’s first electromechanical device for the delivery of life-saving immunotherapies. Read case study