Digital health spending focused on the 50-plus population has doubled over the course of the last three years, and investors from venture capital companies to private equity firms are entering the market in droves.
From seed capital and throughout the funding process, investors are eyeing the market as a major growth target, according to a first-ever report new report released through a partnership between AARP and StartUp Health.
The organizations released the findings this week through the launch of their digital health funding insights report evaluating the 50-plus market.
“There is a significant opportunity for entrepreneurs thinking creatively on how to make their technologies applicable to the 50+ community,” said Unity Stoakes, co-founder and president of StartUp Health. “Our ongoing collaboration with AARP enables us to identify key trends for entrepreneurs and also develop the educational programing and research insights needed to inspire more innovators to focus on re-imagining solutions for our aging population.”
Over the last three years, deal count tripled from 135 deals in 2010 to 465 in 2013. Investment showed a sharp uptick as well, from $958 million in 2010 to $2.29 billion this year.
Early stage innovation is the primary growth driver, AARP and StartUp Health report, attributable to several factors: health care reform, digital health technology advances, chronic disease acceleration and a golden age of entrepreneurship. Nearly three quarters of the deals charted in 2013 were in Series A and seed round capital investment.
Among opportunities in the 50-plus digital health care space, medication management is the “newest” investment target, while emergency detection and response had the highest year-over-year deal count increase, at 22%.
Vital sign monitoring marked the largest median deal size at $2.76 million.
“The nine health innovation frontiers represent a vast and under-addressed market opportunity,” the report states. “Breakthrough technologies, innovative services, and disruptive business models will benefit more than 100 million people 50+ and represent $20 billion in revenue by 2018.”
Written by Elizabeth Ecker