The health industry. Ages old and forever known as an inflexible state-led domain. But times are changing even for this verticle and we wanted to cover all important developments for our members in the event“Health Uncovered“. It was the first episode of our new event series „Vertical Uncovered“- an industry-specific format that we organise together with Austrian Startups. For the first part of the evening, we invited the expert Dr. Gordon Euller to give a short overview of developments happening in the industry. Afterwards, 5 pre-screened startups pitched their business ideas to the selected investor audience.
Euller made it clear: Digital Health is sexy and a heavily growing industry. The health industry has always been one, where money was not scarce. The health industry has always been one of the most exciting fields and through digitalisation startups today develop scalable solutions attracting angel investors and established healht-corporations. Additionally, the rate of improvements in the health sector accelerates. There have been incredible enhancements in the last decades, concerning drugs and other ares, but if we think about it, the way health care services are being delivered stayed pretty much the same in this period. Euller predicts, that this is going to change too.
Whoever thinks that using algorithms in the healthcare sector is something completely new is wrong. Also depending on the different sub-industries, healthcare had always used algorithmic processes. An example is, when a doctor passes a decision tree in her head when concluding to a certain diagnosis. All that digital health does is making this decisions more efficient, faster and independent from individuals. This shift of paradigm is absolutely necessary when looking at increasing healthcare costs worldwide.
These skyrocketing healthcare costs also point at the enormous market potential of the industry. An average European country spends about 11% of its GDP on healthcare (the US spends 18%). In absolute numbers that is a market size of e.g. 344bn EUR in Germany, constantly rising above inflation. Depending on the share of this market that will experience major disruption through digital health solutions (Euller estimates at least a third), one can quickly calculate the massive financial opportunity for innovation and investment. The famous apple head, Tim Cook, already said, that the healthcare industry will make the smartphone market look small in the future. And Euller made clear that he thinks Cook was right.
In Europe, there are still very few leadership positions with a strong focus on digital health. This is partly because the industry is just gaining popularity and partly because many investors hesitate to invest because of lacking knowledge and experience. What is more, there was no promising track record of successful exits from early stage investments. This has changed recently and digital health fundings are hitting one record after the other. Euller argues, that investing could be worth the risk: Digital health improves the independency of patients, fundamentally disrupts the probably largest industry on earth and helps people to stay healthier – and it is just getting started…
Tataaa! Here the startups that presented at Health Uncovered
Abios: is an algorithmic bio data system that helps in psycho-physic diagnostics. It can track everything from physical activity to sleep performance and has is applications in lifestyle, sports and professional diagnosis. This makes it the perfect tool for all kinds of users from experienced therapists to professional sports people and for you and me.
Image Biopsy Lab: enables Software-based assessment and analysis of radiographs. This automates routine tasks while improving diagnostic accuracy and disease prediction. While current disease management and treatment is based on sometimes unreliable diagnostics – and three doctors sometimes bring three opinions – image biopsy lab introduces a physician-independent disease assessment based on artificial intelligence.
Kokoro: builds a mobile based application that offers two unique and differentiated ways to capture emotional data. It is meant to help organisations to measure its emotions and thereby enhance employees‘ quality of life and reduce staff fluctuation. Kokoro comes from the Japanese and it means the integration of mind, soul and body. To achieve that goal for organisations the tool provides Key Emotional Indicators (KEIs) that enable better decision making.
Medworker: has a solution for the information overload problem which is a serious challenge for the efficient work of healthcare teams. Medworker offers an easy-to-handle, efficient, intelligent and connected information, knowledge and competence management tool. It connects healthcare teams amongst each other and with medical product companies and it thereby dodges the good old pen and paper method that is still in place in most healthcare teams around the world.
SpinaCare: Builds a high-quality massage board for a problem we all know: back pain. It’s main field of application is seen in its use for companies by enhancing productivity and employee satisfaction. Ensuring prevention and not therapy, SpinaCare presented this wellness hardware for flexible and individual usage for example in work breaks.
The next Vertical Uncovered happens in December. We are looking forward to seeing you there and also get your feedback for our last edition: Health Uncovered!