News 6/1/16

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Forbes revises the estimated net work of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes from $4.5 billion to $0. Their estimate of her wealth is based on her 50 percent stake in Theranos, whose shares are not traded on any stock market. In 2014 private investors purchased stakes that implied a $9 billion valuation for the company. After speaking with venture capitalists, analysts, and industry experts, Forbes concluded a more realistic value for Theranos is $800 million. Holmes owns common stock so by the time investors cash out on preferred shares on the $724 million they invested, there won’t be much of anything left.

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CB Insights reports 2016 is on track for a record year in digital health deals and funding. With more than $2 billion invested in digital health across 316  deals in the first quarter, 2016 is well on the way to break 2015’s all-time high in deals and dollars.

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RubiconMD closes $4.0 million in Series A financing led by Waterline Ventures with participation from Dioko Health Ventures and Alma Mundi Fund FCRE. The company plans to use the funds to further invest in product enhancements and expand access to the platform. RubiconMD provides an eConsult platform for primary care providers to get access to same-day insights from an expert panel of specialists, enabling quick remote opinions that eliminate unnecessary visits, reduce patient wait time and alleviate travel burden. To this end, primary care providers can upload images, labs and studies, and then ask a question in a particular specialty, such as dermatology, orthopedic surgery, or psychiatry.

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AI startup Lumiata raises a $10 million Series B fund from Intel Capital. The company is building algorithms to quantify and manage risk within population health programs. The company plans to use the funding to grow staff numbers, especially in product development. The will also expand their data science capabilities.

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Nokia completes acquisition of Withings S.A., whose award-winning digital health products and services will strengthen Nokia’s position in “the Internet of Things.” Nokia paid $191 million in cash. Withings portfolio of regulated and unregulated products include activity trackers, scales, thermometers, blood pressure monitors, home and baby monitors and more. It is built on a sophisticated digital health platform. Withings’ products are complemented by an ecosystem of more than a hundred compatible apps.

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I recently read Paul Kalanithi’s memoir When Breath Becomes Air and I couldn’t put it down. It is a powerful and moving story of a stage IV lung cancer diagnosis beautifully written by a neurosurgeon, who is also the patient. Kalanithi will leave you thinking about what makes life meaningful long after you finish the book.

The first meetup sponsored by HIStalk Connect was in Pasadena, CA last week. Stacy Bamberg, CEO of Veristride shared the journey of a young startup in developing a healthcare data analytics platform leveraging IoT via an insole wearable. Email me if you are interested in having us sponsor your next meetup.

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