Saturday, January 16, 2016

Digital Health News and Notes

Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Illumina are among the investors in the $150mm seed round of a new cancer diagnostics startup subtly named GRAIL

Once promising telemedicine startup HealthSpot (an Ohio-based startup that I first covered in 2012 while I was a full-time blogger at has squandered almost $30mm in venture capital and partnerships with Cleveland Clinic and RiteAid announcing it will enter the Digital Health Deadpool. To add insult to injury, HealthSpot's leading competitor Chicago-based Higi landed $40mm in new funding this week.

On the investor-side of the table former-Senator Bill Frist has unveiled a new private equity fund based in Chicago, Orbimed announces a new $950mm fund and Partners HealthCare expands it’s life sciences innovation fund to $100mm. The American Medical Association has invested $15mm in a new for-profit startup incubator based in San Francisco called Healthy2047. Not to be outdone, the Governor of Massachusetts has launched an almost cliche effort to make his state the "digital health hub of the world".

Bill Frist
On the personalized medicine front Flatiron Health closed a massive $175mm funding round led by Roche and NantHealth has acquired NaviNet and founder Patrick Soon-Shiong makes it clear he now has all of the pieces in place to move swiftly toward IPO.

According to data from both Rock Health and Startup Health venture funding was down during 2015 in digital health for the first time since data on investments in the sector have been tracked.

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