In Partnership with Medica | Sponsored Post
In November each year, before the Black Friday advertisements and the Cyber Monday hangover, there is another annual event that highlights the latest and best products available: MEDICA. The MEDICA international trade fair draws over 120,000 people from around the world who bring their shopping lists, and their checkbooks, to spend four wonderful days in the beautiful city of Düsseldorf, Germany.
For over 40 years, MEDICA has served as the place to see nearly every healthcare-related product the world has to offer. In 2018, over 5,200 exhibitors from 70 countries filled every available stand in 17 halls – each approximately as large as a football field! Yet even with its reputation, legacy and status as the ‘the world’s largest event for the medical sector’, the content at MEDICA continues to innovate and transform as rapidly as the sector it serves.
For example, the MEDICA Connected Healthcare Forum (the ‘MCHF’) invites over 130 speakers and 8,500 visitors to explore the latest insights, technologies and solutions for connected and mobile healthcare. This conference-within-a-conference fosters collaboration, inspires leaders and showcases companies that are leading the way to a more connected healthcare system. The MCHF also attracts early stage businesses who compete in the event’s annual MEDICA App COMPETITION (MAC).
2019 marks the 8th year of the MAC, and it provides a valuable stage for up and coming innovators who are tackling big problems. This event puts the focus on real solutions that are making a real difference, and participants are given an opportunity to pitch potential investors in a live and open forum. Two founders of companies that were finalists in the 2018 App Competition, Veta Health and Tonic App, are glad they decided to apply last year.
Dr. Nora Zetsche co-founded Veta Health with Tanvi Vattikuti Abbhi in 2015 to empower patients throughout their care journey between and beyond traditional healthcare settings. Their digital health app provides patients with health status, responsive care and pathways to engaging with their healthcare team to enable stronger support and better health management over the long term.
“One of the best takeaways from the conference and the competition was the constant string of interactions with people from across Europe and the world. We were able to get out in front of the marketplace to get a better understanding of it, exposure to it, but also enhance and grow our networks so when we go out into the market for a seed round (later this year) we are better prepared to evaluate if it’s a good fit. The app competition also provided a wide cross-section of judges from around Europe and the world, providing a technology agnostic view and very holistic approach to this competition.”
The team at Tonic App is developing a mobile platform that aggregates everything relevant for the day-to-day professional experience of medical doctors. This includes compiling resources that will assist providers in the diagnosis and treatment of patients and non-clinical resources, such as peer-reviewed medical news, insights and perspectives on consumer products. The company was co-founded from a project started in 2015 where Co-founder and CEO Daniela Seixas, MD, PhD, recognized a need for information that was easily searchable, but dispersed across thousands of websites.
After co-founding Tonic App with Christophe de Kalbertmatten, Dávid Borsósand Andrew Barnes, they quickly worked the concept into a viable platform and moved to “internationalize” it. For this team of co-founders, the competition at the MEDICA Connected Healthcare Forum was a next logical step – providing a prestigious stage to present their platform to the healthcare community.
“There’s no other medical conference in the world that you can reach so many people from across the European Union or the world,” said Dr. Seixas. “Europe itself is still very fragmented and if you had to travel all over the continent or world to meet with contacts, it could take months. You can have all of these meetings and connections at MEDICA in just a few days which is a big deal for startup like us.”
Dr. Seixas added, “when we attended the conference and participated in the MEDICA App Competition, we were in the middle of fundraising, so the visibility of the competition and the prize was really key to us. We were visible to not only venture capitalists, but also our own clients, as well as pharma and medtech companies.”
Another benefit Dr. Seixas cited was the opportunity to connect with other CEOs and Founders and exchange experiences.
“It gave a good opportunity to see what others were doing and (of course) it was a good way to meet VC and corporate investors and learn from their experiences.”
This year’s MAC at the 2019 MEDICA Connected Healthcare Forum is set for 19 November 2019. To sign up and be kept informed about the competition, visit here.