At RESI Europe, Investors Discuss the Challenges for Diagnostic Startups

14 Mar

By Lucy Parkinson, VP of Investor Research, LSN

There’s a widespread perception that funding and launching new diagnostic technologies is a difficult undertaking.  In addition to the scientific and technical challenges of developing a new product, diagnostic entrepreneurs need to build a solid business case that will indicate future success.  Many fail to realize that investors will be as interested in evidence of market traction and physician support than in signals of diagnostic sensitivity and specificity.

At RESI Europe, five experienced senior staff from investment firms and major strategics in the industry will explain how they look for good bets in the diagnostics field.  Representing a spectrum from early stage investment to potential exit partner, these investors will explain to the audience what it takes to get a diagnostic funded and how they help startups bring new tests and monitoring solutions to market.

Moderator: Tom Miller (Managing Partner, Greybird Ventures)

After receiving a degree in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, Tom studied Medical Physics at the Harvard/MIT Health Sciences and Technology joint program graduating with a Masters degree in 1982. During his academic career he worked at Los Alamos, the Swiss Institute for Nuclear Research (now the Paul Scherer Institute), Brookhaven National Laboratory, and the Massachusetts General Hospital as a research associate in radiation biophysics. Tom then joined Siemens Medical Systems where, after 9 years, he became the first non-German CEO of a German factory and business unit. He left Siemens after 15 years to become CEO of the global medical operations of Carl Zeiss. Completing a successful turnaround, he joined Analogic Corporation as CEO. After three years and a doubling of the stock price, Tom left to become CEO of LightLab Imaging, a start-up that he helped to establish. Completing a profitable sale of LightLab, Tom re-joined Siemens eventually serving as a member of the operating board of Siemens Healthcare and the CEO of Customer Solutions Division, responsible for 26,000 employees in over 130 countries. Tom co-founded GreyBird in mid-2013 with an investment focus on technologies enabling precision medicine diagnosis.

Walter Stockinger (Managing Partner, Hadean Ventures)

Walter is a seasoned healthcare investor with previous experience in strategy consulting and basic research. After joining the Boston Consulting Group as a member of the Healthcare Practice Team Walter advised pharmaceutical companies and PE firms in the context of commercial projects as well as during buy and sell side M&A transactions. In 2009 walter joined the London office of one of the largest specialist healthcare VC firms. Being responsible for deal sourcing, due diligence and exit management Walter gained significant experience by successfully investing into and exiting portfolio companies.

Walter received a master’s degree and a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Vienna. After his graduation, he worked for over five years as a research fellow at Harvard University. He has published 15 peer reviewed papers in top scientific journals including Cell and EMBO.

Michael Sidler (General Partner, Redalpine)

Dr. Michael Sidler has co-founded Redalpine Venture Partners 2007 and acts as General Partner for Redalpine Capital Funds I to IV. Redalpine invests in European tech and health tech companies. Before Redalpine, Michael was responsible for corporate investments and M&A at Prionics AG, a Diagnostics / Biotech company in, Switzerland, where under his guidance several acquisitions have been completed. From 1998 to 2003, Michael was with The Boston Consulting Group in Zürich and Toronto. Michael Sidler holds a PhD in Life Sciences from University of Zurich. He is a member of several organizations, juries and boards for the support of innovation and startups.

Ekkehard Kauffmann (Global Business Development M&A, Roche Diagnostics)

M&A and Strategy lead in Roche Diagnostic Global Business Development, responsible for external growth strategies as well as evaluating and securing early to commercial stage innovation for Roche Diagnostics through acquisitions and other deal types. Previous leadership roles in business development and R&D at Bayer and in the Novartis spin-off company Zeptosens. Ph.D. in Biophysics and executive MBA education background.

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