Device Investing in Tough Times: The Venture View
Device deals--albeit fewer--are still getting done in the current environment, and many investors remain bullish on devices. A panel of venture investors--both VC and corporate--who are still active dealmakers, discuss what they want to see today in start-up companies, and whether the device investment model has changed both for now and the future.
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At Elsevier Business Intelligence's February IN3 West conference, a panel of leading device venture investors, who remain committed to and are actively doing deals in medtech, discussed how the recent recession has affected device investing and how much, if at all, that world has changed as a result.
A decade ago, during the device industry's first financing crisis, medical device incubators played a crucial role in keeping small start-ups viable. But incubators themselves soon ran into problems, most notably in finding a sustainable financing model for themselves. California-based Intersect Partners has been one of the most successful incubators but it, too, needed to find a new model to make incubation viable.
The medical device industry is undergoing a crisis of funding, but not of confidence, according to a panel of investors convened at Windhover's recent medtech conference, In3 West,. The conference panel sought to explore how the medical device investment community is operating in these troubled times, how they will invest going forward, and how they will support their companies if things don't improve. We were especially curious to know if the funding challenges that start-ups face are really due to the overall dire economy, or if that dark cloud merely masks changing fundamentals in the medical device industry that are making it more difficult for companies to find funding, gain FDA approval, and enjoy a healthy exit. Our panel weighs in on the matter.