VCs skeptical of digital health startup potential at mHealth Summit

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In all the sunshine coming out of the recent mHealth Summit, there was a little dark cloud: a well-attended panel of VC investors moderated by Rob McCray from the Wireless Life Science Alliance (WLSA) which essentially disparaged the market value of digital health. Statements such as ‘there will never be a $25 billion digital health startup’ from Dan Lubin of Radius Ventures–which only invests in post-revenue companies with clearly identified companies and scalability–went unchallenged by the other participants. It’s absolutely true that there are a lot of boutique apps/products which will wash out, and that there’s a split between consumer and ‘institutional’ (products/services used by SNFs and assisted living facilities). This report from Brian Edwards writing for iMedical Apps urges entrepreneurs to defend their vision even when urged to waver or exit, and find other sources of funding beyond VCs (which in Ed. Donna’s experience now tend to underfund and over-demand of management) and approach ‘out of the box’ parties (examples: AT&T and Verizon). The question they should be asking, he posits, is: What Would Mark Zuckerberg Do? (WWMZD?) Dear mHealth entrepreneurs, VCs don’t believe you can change the world