With a rich history of innovation, Philadelphia has all the elements required to be a thriving hub for health care startups. Our community boasts nationally recognized investors, entrepreneurial faculty and students conducting cutting edge research, outstanding hospitals, innovative payers, the world’s top pharmaceutical companies, and a wealth of design and development talent.
The Center's Entrepreneurs’ Forum series seeks to advance Philadelphia’s entrepreneurial ecosystem by providing education and networking opportunities that connect individuals passionate about solving some of the most pressing problems in health care.
Inaugural Entrepreneurs' Forum
More than 600 individuals gathered at the Smilow Center for Translational Research to attend the inaugural Entrepreneurs’ Forum in March 2014. Dynamic health care startups, Penn Medicine faculty leaders, the region’s top venture capital firms, industry and health system executives, and talented students from multiple disciplines were in attendance- and the energy was palpable!
Eight featured startups pitched to a packed auditorium, and more than 35 new companies showcased their innovations during networking sessions. At the conclusion of the event, the sponsors got on stage to announce the startups they wished to partner with.
Safeguard Scientifics selected Take Command Health, a mobile platform developed by Jack Hooper of Wharton that enables consumers to make informed health insurance choices. Safeguard will advise and provide services to accelerate Take Command’s efforts.
First Round Capital, among the most acclaimed early stage venture firms in the US, chose two winners: Aircare, a mobile platform co-founded by George Zeng of Wharton that enables effective post-acute care to prevent readmissions, and Dosed, a diabetes management application developed by Daniel Fine of Wharton. Both companies will receive access to the First Round partners for feedback, business strategy development and introductions.
SR One, GSK’s venture capital arm with deep expertise in life sciences, chose Cytovas, founded by Drs. Emille Mohler of Cardiology, Jonni Moore of Pathology and Wade Rogers of Computational Biology. Cytovas seeks to provide advanced assays for cardiovascular disease. The team will receive advisory services from the SR One team.
Robin Hood Ventures, a leading angel investor network, selected EasyCopay, developed by Fred Hawkins of Wharton. EasyCoPay seeks to streamline pharmacy co-payments. Fred was invited to pitch at Robin Hood’s next partner meeting.
DreamIt Ventures, which has accelerated the creation of over 100 startups, selected OnCall, a product that offers consumers on-demand access to house calls and serves as a marketplace connecting hospitals and moonlighting clinicians. Scott Ames of Wharton and Grant Mitchell (MD/MBA candidate) received a fast pass to the finalist round for DreamIt Health Philadelphia sponsored by Penn Medicine and Independence Blue Cross.
The Digital Health Accelerator (DHA) at the Science Center awarded 1DocWay, a telepsychiatry technology developed by Samir Malik of Wharton alum a "Golden Ticket" to the final round of the DHA. The team will compete to win $50k, mentorship and free office space in the final round.
Mobiquity chose MobileOptx’s device for coupling smart phones with endoscopy equipment. Drs. Jason Brandt and Natasha Mirza of ENT will receive free consulting time and guidance from Mobiquity’s experts in enterprise mobility strategy, design and development.
Arcweb, a leading product design and development firm, chose Flowcate. Developed by Dr. Tessa Cook in the Department of Radiology, Flowcate visualizes patient flow.
Venturef0rth, a co-working and collaboration space with advisory services for early stage companies, selected HaxBox, a robotics technology that allows disabled patients to use gaming in rehabilitation. Developed by Dalton Banks, a robotics student at Penn, HaxBox was awarded 3 months of free office space.
Chariot Solutions, experts in enterprise software development, selected SexiU, a sex-ed app developed by Grace Olamijulo of the School of Nursing. Chariot Solutions awarded Grace free consulting time.
And finally, using YORN, we crowdsourced an audience favorite – Biomeme – a DreamIt Health company that turns a smartphone into a convenient, low-cost lab for fast DNA diagnostics and on-site disease tracking. Biomeme won support from the Center for Health Care Innovation.
The Entrepreneurs' Forum was a collaborative effort between the Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation, UPstart at the Center for Technology Transfer, Safeguard Scientifics, First Round Capital, SR One, DreamIt Health Philadelphia, Robin Hood Ventures, Mobiquity, Arcweb, Chariot Solutions, the Science Center and VentureF0rth.
Entrepreneurs' Forum V2
In December, we hosted a more tailored, intimate event in an effort to help Penn Medicine’s entrepreneurially minded thought leaders turn their ideas into businesses. Industry veterans, successful entrepreneurs, and investors with deep expertise explored the nuts and bolts of starting a company during panel discussions. In addition, open networking sessions provided attendees the opportunity to network with their peers and talk one-on-one with experts.
More than 200 Penn faculty, staff, clinicians and students, as well as many of the region’s leading investors and entrepreneurs attended the Entrepreneurs’ Forum V2.
The event was a collaborative effort between The Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation, the Penn Center for Innovation, SR One and Safeguard Scientifics.