Big Data technologies to help organize and make sense of healthcare data ranging from EMR to clinical trial information is an increasingly large area for investment. 2013 will see record levels for funding and deals.
Within the big data industry, verticalized solutions focused on the healthcare industry have become increasingly prevalent. Given vast quantities of data that is generated in the industry – everything from data on electronic medical records to clinical trials, the principles and technologies behind Big Data solutions would seem well-suited to the healthcare sector. And investors are seeing opportunity as they are increasingly betting that healthcare-related startups leveraging Big Data technologies are going to be a big deal. In some sense, this is a combination of two of today’s most popular investment themes – digital health + big data so it’s perhaps only natural to expect that this would get investors excited.
Healthcare big data companies fall into three primary subcategories as detailed below (with illustrative companies given for each).
Healthcare Business Intelligence and Analytics – Companies that provide BI and analytics software solutions for hospitals and healthcare firms. These include EMR and EHR software vendors that can not only store large sets of data, but also turn them into predictive insights to track medication compliance, diagnose and treat patients. Examples include Practice Fusion and Explorys.
Consumer Health and Wellness – Companies that help consumers track and improve their health-related choices using Big Data technologies. These companies offer solutions ranging from patient monitoring to insurance transparency to “quantified self” services. Examples include Castlight Health and Strava.
Clinical Research – Companies that use Big Data to store and analyze research from clinical and genomics trials. Examples include DNAnexus and Bina Technologies.
Since the start of 2012, Big Data investments in healthcare have totaled over $460M across 75 deals. And like the broader Big Data category which has reeled in $1.28B in 2013, financing activity continues to accelerate. Between 2011 and 2012, funding to private healthcare-related Big Data companies jumped 36%. And deal activity in 2013 year-to-date has been strong and looks to be on target to easily exceed 2012 levels.