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Digital startup funding shows signs of maturity, Startup Health director says

By Gus Venditto
05:13 PM
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Report shared at the HIMSS16 Venture+ Forum shows a shift toward "supportive capital."
Panelists at Monday's Venture+ Forum at HIMSS16.

LAS VEGAS — “We are five years into a 25-year mission to transform healthcare,” Polina Hanin, academy director at Startup Health said Monday morning at the Venture+ Forum while delivering a report on funding trends for digital health startups.

The first signs of maturity can be seen in the growing number of later stage investments. Startup Health’s research found that the number of mid-stage deals increased by 20 percent from 2014 to 2015. Late-stage deals grew by 55 percent in the same period. At the same time, there has been no let up in the activity for seed funding and Series A rounds. More than 600 organizations invested in early stage companies in 2015.

The report, “StartUp Health Insights,” revealed several trends.

For starters, investment has shifted toward startups in the field of patient-consumer experience ($1.36 billion invested) and wellness/benefits ($1.26 billion) leading all categories.

Workflow and medical device startups saw a dip in funding. “We think investors want to see results” before committing more funds to a category that has received heavy investment in recent years, Hanin said.

Average deal size also continues to grow on an annual basis. In 2013, average deal size was $2.8 million and mainly in Series A investments. In 2015, the average deal was $15 million with growth in the number of Series B financings. Hanin said, “it is encouraging to see the supportive capital is there.”

Startup Health’s report, which looks only at the U.S. market, identified a surprising shift in real estate. For years, San Francisco, New York and Boston were the top metropolitan markets for digital startups. In 2015, Los Angeles had jumped into the top three, beating out Boston with 20 deals.

The top venture investors in the space were GE Ventures, Google Ventures, Khosla Ventures, NEA, Qualcomm, Rock Health, Tencent, Venrock and Sequoia.

Twitter: @GusVenditto


This story is part of our ongoing coverage of the HIMSS16 conference. Follow our live blog for real-time updates, and visit Destination HIMSS16 for a full rundown of our reporting from the show. For a selection of some of the best social media posts of the show, visit our Trending at #HIMSS16 hub.