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Talking points about investment in Niveus and PharmaSecure
Written by Anne DeGheest // 02 October 2011 // Angel funding

The Los Altos Town Crier published an interview this week about two recent investments with my angel group HealthTech Capital:

Local angel investors kick-start two health-tech firms By Elliott Burr


Los Altos Hills resident Anne DeGheest serves as managing director of HealthTech Capital, an angel-investor group based in town. Recently, the healthcare veteran's firm invested in two startups as part of a Series-A syndicated financing round. Following is a Q&A between the Town Crier and DeGheest.  

Q: As the name suggests, your company invests in tech companies centered in the health-care industry. What are some telltale signs that a particular company is a good investment?

A: HealthTech Capital is a group of angel and venture investors investing in companies that will decrease health-care costs. We typically see two big categories: better productivity tools to improve the delivery of health care by existing providers (from hospital to home health) and new patient engagement solutions from the very sick to the healthy/fitness market.  

Q: What convinced you and your colleagues to invest in PharmaSecure and Niveus Medical?

A: We were very impressed with what the entrepreneurs had accomplished with very little capital. They showed passion, commitment and an ability to deliver significant milestones with a small amount of angel capital. They have big ideas that can have significant impact to the health-care system. In both cases, we had mentored them heavily before we made the investment. PharmaSecure uses cellphone technology to combat the global problem of counterfeit drugs. Niveus Medical is developing a technology to preserve muscle strength during long hospital stays, especially time in the intensive-care unit, and could accelerate patient recovery, shorten hospital stays, and reduce both hospital and payer costs  

Q: HealthTech Capital invested in these two companies alongside other venture-capital firms. Is there a growing trend toward syndication? What are the benefits/drawbacks from a venture capitalist's standpoint?

A: There is a growing trend for angels to organize themselves into specialized groups like HealthTech Capital to pool their expertise together and increase their investment leverage. In addition, these angel groups are cross syndicating with each across the country. It allows us to close a larger round of $2 million to $3 million and attract small venture firms to syndicate with us. There has now been a growing amount of deals with angel groups leading the round with an anchor term sheet and having smaller venture firms following these term sheets. It allows venture firms to diversify and deploy their seed capital into more deals knowing that these established and respected angel groups will be value added in identifying promising companies as well as mentoring them to the next level.  

Q: What are some ways in which you mold the business strategy of a young health care/tech company?

A: As a business architect and mentor capitalist over the last 25 years with my personal company, MedStars, I have been working closely with health-care entrepreneurs in understanding the pain points of all the stakeholders involved, developing a value proposition for each one of them that creates a sense of urgency and building barriers of entry beyond traditional patents. In particular, I have been very successful at creating new large health-care markets by adapting other industries' business models and technologies to solve inefficient health-care workflows. HealthTech Capital is expanding on this approach by leveraging all our members' expertise in existing health-care delivery, FDA oversights, new upcoming technologies and sustainable consumer engagements approaches. We help them refine their business models by leveraging our members' expertise and networks to answer questions like: What are the pain points being solved? Who are the stakeholders? Why would they pay? How will we prove the value proposition? What are the regulatory/FDA oversights? Why is it unique? How can they defend against existing and future competitors? How will you scale up?  

Q: Of which Halloween costume you've worn in the past are you most proud?

A: Being born in Belgium, I usually have a European flavor theme ... with a Belgian chocolate twist

MedStars and HealthTech Capital invest in Niveus
Written by Anne DeGheest // 26 July 2011 // Entrepreneur, Angel funding
For the last 2 years, I have been mentoring Brian Fahey, the founder of Niveus who is now closing on a $2 Million series A from major angel groups. 

My angel group, HealthTech Capital, played a key role with our members investing directly around $600,000. By sharing our due diligence with other angel groups, we helped in creating a powerfull value add syndicate.

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Healthcare Technology Innovation Boom
Written by Anne DeGheest // 08 June 2011 // Angel funding, Conferences, Video
Anne DeGheest was a speaker on May 18, 2011 in Palo Alto at the SDForum on Healthcare Technology Innovation BoomWatch the video below
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HealthTech is next big opportunity
Written by Anne DeGheest // 03 May 2011 // Angel funding
Don Ross wrote an article today on MobileHealthNews: Early-stage investors in traditional healthcare companies are certainly having a tough time these days. Many biotech, diagnostic and medical device firms have simply become too risky, as the current uncertain FDA regulatory environment increases cost and time to exit. In fact, venture funding for these companies fell during the fourth quarter of 2010 to the lowest level since 2003, and the number of deals dropped further in the first quarter of 2011, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers. 

This overhanging "exit challenge" is leading many angel investors and venture capitalists to seek new types of investments - companies with lower capital requirements and faster exits. Nowhere was this quest more evident than at the 2011 Angel Capital Association Summit, a premier angel investor event, held last month in Boston. During the event, I participated on the "Future of Life Science Investing" panel, where the discussion quickly left traditional life sciences and zeroed in on what is emerging as the next big investment opportunity arena: HealthTech.

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2011 Stanford GSB Healthcare Summit on May 11, 2011
Written by Anne DeGheest // 21 April 2011 // Angel funding, Conferences, Video
Anne DeGheest was a speaker at the Stanford Business School Healthcare Summit on May 11, 2011. 

This annual conference explores the innovations that are likely to transform the global healthcare marketplace. It provides a forum where business and government leaders, academics and students can debate the forces that will shape healthcare delivery in the 21st century. In this event, the participants will learn how business, both large and small, established and startup, US-based and global, innovate to improve patient outcomes while attempting to control the growth in health care costs.
Check below the panel video (one hour) on Capital for Early Stage Innovation



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