Technological development in healthcare has long been associated with the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, with billions of euros yearly pumped into drug research alone. However, one growing trend has been the presence of technology focusing on issues from the patient’s perspective, such as accessibility and choice.
These deals could be indicative of a VC revival in the sector. Healthtech investments in Europe reached a high of 92 deals worth €195.4 million in 2015, per PitchBook, before dipping slightly last year. And while deal numbers are also down so far in 2017, the €143.2 million invested this year already indicates lasting faith in healthtech’s potential.
Europe—specifically the EU—however, presents a key challenge for an industry with a need to innovate, research and handle sensitive patient data. On top of this, the EU’s Medical Devices and IVD Regulations are set to come in to force this year, a series of directives which will make it tougher for clinical companies to bring products to market, increase transparency requirements and create a European database for medical devices available to the public.
For nascent companies in the sector, the burdens of these extra costs could prove prohibitive to both them and investors. For now however, VCs aren’t accepting a bad diagnosis just yet.