I attended the HealthTech 2.0 conference hosted by Women of Wearables Global. At this event, I heard a fascinating panel discussion about investing in healthtech. The digital health market is expected to reach $536 billion by 2025 and 2020 will be the largest funding year ever for the sector. Led by Jenny Thomas, Director of DigitalHealth.London, the panel discussed many interesting questions, such as “Is there any untapped potential in this industry” and “What’s the next big thing to invest in in the healthcare industry?”
The panel consisted of Amina Sugimoto, DrPH, founder and CEO of fermata Inc., Neha Tanna, Investment Partner at Joyance Partners, Jonathan Machado, Investment Director at Samsung NEXT and Pauliina Martikainen, Investment Director at Maki.vc.
When tracking the progress and rise of healthtech and femtech there was the view that Covid-19 was the main reason technology in healthcare has boomed, AI nursing means patients can be managed from home remotely. If done well, they will only need to see a doctor every six months. Covid-19 has meant there is a real need for this sort of technology.
When looking to the future, the panellists agreed that whether virtual care and healthtech remains popular will vary from country to country. Amina believes Japan will return to pre-pandemic systems whilst Pauliina believed there is no reason this industry will stop now the wheels have begun turning. Neha pointed out that healthtech is now a very saturated market and companies will have to stand out. Jonathan echoed this and stated that investors will have to be very careful in deciphering which companies’ growth is real and sustained rather than temporarily inflated by Covid-19.
As an investor, this panel was exciting to hear from and echoed many of my beliefs. I am a proud investor in healthtech but particularly in the femtech sector with Elvie.
Elvie is a London-based company founded by Tania Boler. Frustrated to find that women’s health has been given inadequate attention in both the research and technological fields, Boler set out to make remedying this her priority and to “get women talking about health issues more”. She has achieved this goal through two of Elvie’s key products: the Pump and Trainer. The former is for breastfeeding, the latter is for the pelvic floor.
Whilst the femtech market is flourishing, there is still a long way to go in terms of research and understanding of women’s healthcare. I hope to continue watching the sector closely and see what novel ideas and developments come to fruition.