Fast funding and sale roundup for Thursday/Friday

A quick summary of news on both recent funding, another recently released funding analysis to add to the pile and sales–one completed, one potential:

  • The StartUp Health accelerator is now producing its independent analysis of health tech funding deals, presumably to catch the fire of RockHealth’s recognized quarterly report [TTA 9 July]. The July 2013 Digital Health Insights Funding Report is available in Slideshare format on their website with the most reported news being the 47 percent year-over-year growth to date, contrasting to RockHealth’s 12 percent, though the difference in all three may be the sampling. Practice management, big data and body computing/sensors lead the trends, according to their summary.
  • What is intriguing in the July deals is the whopping $40 million Series A funding of Oscar, which will integrate telemedicine (presumably consults) and free generic medications to its members in New York State, where they’ve stated they will be integrated into the Health Exchange in NY State. One wonders how they plan to do so on insurance exchanges which haven’t even started yet and which will be having their own challenges being a retail platform for health plans. Not unexpectedly you’ll find Khosla Ventures and Thrive Capital on the roster. MedSynergies led with a $65 million Series A for their software which will facilitate hospital networks performance monitoring of practices and provider referrals/scheduling. Internationally, Withings raised a $30 million Series A in July. MedCityNews also delves deeper into what they see as trends.
  • Fitbit just raised an additional $43 million to add to their previous $23 million. While they are still lagging fitness monitoring rival Jawbone UP by $84 million, rumors abound on what Fitbit plans to do with it: a more fully featured smartwatch? Additional apps to keep their user base engaged?–at the risk of overcomplication?   Fortune, TechCrunch
  • Toronto-based Diversinet closed their sale to New Jersey-based IMS Health for what seems like a small amount: (US)$3.5 million. Its MobiSecure technology provides government-security level mobile app security to customers such as AirStrip and the US Army. However, they were embroiled in early days in a breakup with a mobile provider, AllOne Health, and despite all their high-level tech clearances, the income realized, according to Mobihealthnews, was only in the $1 million range per year and declining and losses increasing. IMS Health is best known for its healthcare informatics, but has been involved with Ford’s in-car SYNC in development of the Allergy Alert app [TTA 7 Aug 12].
  • The ‘For Sale’ sign is also up at BlackBerry, with a corporate committee now officially exploring alliances and a sale, in the usual depressing drill. In a company once ubiquitous enough for smartphone usage to be dubbed ‘Crackberry’, and which still enjoys major worldwide market share and enterprise favor, they cannot get traction with new models. This Editor never used or liked BB, but it’s still kind of sad. ZDNet.

In-car health monitoring: a Quantum of Dismay

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/gimlet-eye.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]The simple pleasure of a drive, with the cheerful sound of a quiet engine purring and the pleasures of early Spring, are rapidly becoming as obsolete as no cell phone zones. Eye realized it this Sunday whilst driving in Big Blue (left, Cadillac,1955) with Waldo Lydecker to a scenic overlook on the New Jersey Palisades, where other like-minded vintage Cadillac owners unusually take pleasure in parking, eyeballing paint, chrome and upholstery, telling Cadillac tales and generally not doing very much for a few Sunday hours. But it was the drive to and from the garage that gave one pause. Blue must share the road [grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/04281312541.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]with fellow vehicles of all sorts, piloted by–to be kind–distracted drivers minding their GPS, smartphones and MP3 players. Now Blue, being a mature lady, has rather a leisurely pace in gliding her 4,500 lbs both forward and to a stop, so she will mind you if you mind her with a little more room and consideration than a nippy Mercedes hussy coupe.

Thus yesterday’s article from the Telegraph (UK) adds to the Quantum of Dismay. The Gimlet Eye has already turned a very dim eye on the phenomenon of the Automotive Dashboard as mHealthy Monitor. Ford’s SYNC apps alerting you to pollen, pollution and your chances of having an asthma attack at the wheel–useful when used before travel, but blinking and beeping at 70 mph in four-lane traffic? A driver’s seat for hypochondriacs that measures blood pressure, pulse, stress and…blood glucose? (don’t ask)…may work well in the lab, but any New York, Washington, LA or London Metropolitan Area Rush Hour will produce a sound arrangement straight from the Raymond Scott book. A BMW steering wheel that measures perspiration? Ah, the Eye thought that driving your Beemer was supposed to make you glow with excitement. Is it TMBD (too much busy dashboard)? Is it TMI (information), especially if the signs are recorded? Would you then would be ‘asked’ to ‘volunteer’ said information to your insurance company and state DOT due to medical causes? Privacy concerns abound. Cars that can monitor your health–are in-car health monitors the way of the future or a step too far? (Telegraph)

Previously in TTA: Eye’s earlier dismay in More cars that will monitor your BP…and brain wavesFord SYNCs up with Allergy Alert; Editor Donna not much more pleased in Ford’s ‘car that cares’ visits CES, Syncs up HealthrageouslyYour car as mHealth platform.