Sector focus: HealthTech deal activity in 2017 so far
Despite political and economic uncertainty in both the US and Europe, deal activity in the HealthTech sector remained relatively strong in the first quarter of… Read more
Despite political and economic uncertainty in both the US and Europe, deal activity in the HealthTech sector remained relatively strong in the first quarter of 2017. According to HealthTech Heartbeat, a quarterly market update prepared by Results International, 51 M&A transactions were recorded in the quarter with a combined disclosed deal value of approximately $11.5 billion. This shows a slight dip when compared with the same period last year, which recorded 67 deals with a combined value of approximately $15 billion.
Private fundraising activity in Q1 was also healthy. Beauhurst, an investment data platform containing information on UK fast-growth companies, shows 48 fundraisings in the medical technology space with a combined value of £159 million (compared with 26 fundraisings with a combined value of £75.4 million in the same period last year). Activity in Q2 remained buoyant: during this period Beauhurst shows £112.9 million raised by UK fast growth companies across 47 deals.
Key high-profile deals of the year so far include:
- McKesson’s acquisition of CoverMyMeds for $1.1 billion (Jan 17) – McKesson, a US listed healthcare company, acquired CoverMyMeds, a provider of electronic prior authorisation solutions for prescription medications. The acquisition will increase McKesson’s technology offerings to doctors, pharmaceutical manufacturers and insurers.
- EQT Ventures and Octopus Ventures lead $10.5 million venture investment into MyTomorrows (Jan 17) – EQT Ventures and Octopus Ventures, alongside existing backers Balderton Capital and Sofinnova Partners, invested in the Netherlands based start-up which provides patients and doctors with information on, and access to, drugs which are in development or which have been approved by regulators in other countries.
- Philips acquisition of a minority stake in Onelife Health in a low 7-digit Series A funding round (Feb 17) – Philips, a Dutch technology company listed in Amsterdam and New York, acquired a minority interest in German start-up Onelife Health. The partnership will initially focus on Onelife’s Femisphere App, which helps expectant mothers track key biological markers, behaviours and other variables throughout their pregnancy and identify potential risks or complications. The app automatically detects changes in data to provide feedback and advice. It also supports communication and information sharing between patients and medical professionals.
- Cambridge Innovation Capital leads $10 million Series B investment into Congenica (Feb 17) – Existing investors Cambridge Innovation Capital and Amadeus Capital Partners invested alongside Parkwalk Advisors. Congenica is a leading provider of clinical genome analysis technology based in Cambridge, UK, which has developed the Sapientia technology platform. Sapientia enables clinicians and researchers to analyse genome-scale DNA data to facilitate clinical decision making and research.
- Invest Northern Ireland, Innovate UK, Angel CoFund and Techstart NI invest $1.3 million in BrainWaveBank seed round (Mar 17) – BrainWaveBank, based in Northern Ireland, allows individuals to measure and track their cognitive health at home using a wireless headset. The platform uses machine learning and brain-reading technologies to build a record of cognitive health over time, providing insights and advice on how individual lifestyle factors affect performance.
- Roche’s acquisition of Austrian diabetes platform MySugr for up to $100 million (Jul 17) – Roche, a Swiss listed healthcare company and existing investor, acquired mySugr, a digital diabetes management platform for up to $100 million. While the exact sales price was undisclosed, TechCrunch comment that this could well have been amongst the biggest HealthTech exits in Europe to date. MySugr helps diabetics track blood sugar, mediations and activity levels.
In addition, the main technology giants are becoming increasingly invested in HealthTech. Google’s subsidiary Verily (formerly Google Life Sciences), an entity focussed on life sciences and HealthTech, accepted an $800 million investment from Singaporean investment firm Temasek at the beginning of the year. Apple is reportedly working on turning the iPhone into a central bank for all medical information, increasing the potential for apps to be developed to use the data. Amazon’s Echo, a voice-activated computer that answers to the name Alexa, is continuing to accumulate healthcare skills (including being able to recite instructions on how to resuscitate someone having a heart attack). As the shift to digital continues, it feels as if the disruption of the health care sector by technology is only just beginning. It’s clear that HealthTech is an exciting sector to watch as the year continues.