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In 2020, global healthcare investments reached a record high, and the median size of deals increases every year. While breakthroughs in health science drive this growth, human change is an increasingly important driver, particularly the deepening recognition of the ties between health and happiness.
The COVID pandemic has greatly accelerated this process. Trapped at home, people became hyper-conscious of staying healthy and took over aspects of wellness and care previously reserved for professionals. At-home care is on the rise, using data, wearables, and VR to make care, prevention, and personal maximization more accessible. Products aimed at mental health proliferate because COVID-isolated people are under enormous stress and can largely only access services remotely. Virtual ageing-at-home services have also seen a huge leap in adoption as the senior living industry has finally entered the digital age. Similarly, aspects of women’s health such as menopause treatments, fertility solutions, personalized platforms for maternal, child, and sexual wellness are becoming increasingly mainstream.
Our funds focus specifically on the juncture between health science and individual happiness. Our primary investment areas today:
Longevity and Ageing
When it comes to getting older, the numbers tell a tale of dramatic growth: By 2050, the 65+ population in the US will double. That population will have the highest net worth of any age category in the US; Boomers are already the wealthiest generation in history. The world’s current population is 7.79 billion, with 727 million of those are age 65 and older. By 2030, there will be almost 1 billion over the age of 65 on the globe. Those 1 billion people will expect to live longer and better lives. It will be natural for those 65-year-olds to expect 20-25 years of active participation in life and society. These are the kinds of numbers that denote a remarkable area for investment.
The key concept here is health span, not just the number of years a person is alive, but the number where the individual can fully participate in the wider world. So, we are determined to identify and back companies that extend the span of active performance and pleasure for older individuals as well as science-driven companies that keep the body and mind supple and energetic or that even turn back biological time to maximize capabilities at every age.
Because science has grown better at picking up degenerative conditions early, being older is no longer a period of weakness and dependency. Humans face a new span of vibrant life with significant emphasis on personal choice and enablement well into the 70s and 80s. The new older represents a vast, expanding market need where once only frailty could be found. We are focusing on companies that empower this younger/older group to maximize their independence, retain and deepen their social connections, and deliver safety on the one hand and new opportunities on the other.
Women supporting women in everything related to being women is a growing and powerful global trend. The worldwide female 51 percent is demanding new and better approaches to every part of their lives.
According to Emergen Research, the global FemTech market is expected to reach $60 Billion by 2027. Not surprising. When half the people on the planet commit to change, we see a singular investment opportunity. With that in mind, spearheaded by our female-majority investment team, we will evaluate every innovative company we can find across fertility, pelvic health, maternal and child care; menopause; genomics; nutrition and exercise; and sexual pleasure products. We will also selectively invest in tools that augment and support clinicians in providing access to women’s health generally, but in particular for marginalized populations.
As the world emerges from the shared experience of global pandemic and the resulting stress and anxiety, the importance of new modes for modulating emotions stands at an all-time high. According to a report from Rock Health, US mental health companies raised $5.4 Billion in venture funding across the first six months of 2020 alone.
“Today and going forward, bioscience will increasingly focus on the individual as both the recipient of benefit and the direct customer”
The challenge in neuroscience early-stage investing is identifying companies that can deliver a real marketable product. Many startups in this space have brilliant science, but are not fully packaged; the companies often lack effective business models, or require more from individuals in order to deliver benefits, than we feel people are likely to give. We seek companies that have not only truly innovative underlying science, but also clear go-to-market strategies and strong management. We’re looking for companies in these areas: solutions that can manipulate our internal environment to reduce stress or induce delight in some form; solutions that can shift us into a state that lets us cope, sleep or otherwise achieve a delightful or beneficial outcome; solutions that can directly interface with our neurological networks and chemistry in powerful new ways; and companies that continuously monitor our state and change to adjust the environment, tying our inner selves to the outside environment in powerful new ways.
We feel everyone on earth deserves to have a strong, healthy mind, and in our pursuit of empowering individuals to live longer and live better, we will continue to seek out the best biotech companies worldwide striving to achieve that goal.
Historically, bioscience was centred on delivering new solutions into the matrix of interventional care. The customers were payors, hospitals and clinics. The products were complex and expensive. The centre of care was massive intervention at the point of crisis. Now, we see shifts in science and human desire flipping that model on its head. Today and going forward, bioscience will increasingly focus on the individual as both the recipient of benefit and the direct customer. Breakthrough bioscience products will be simpler, smaller, driven more by sensors, data and AI than by cyclopean engineering marvels. With humans at the heart of the new bioscience model, focus will shift from healing the sick toward keeping people healthy. And the prime driver behind new solutions will be their ability to provide people with agency over their bodies and lives. In other words, the new bioscience focus will be individual happiness.