The company allows healthcare builders to evaluate and select tech solutions for their business
Even as venture funding to healthtech startups recently fell to its lowest level in over two years, there were still 125 companies funded in the last quarter, and 458 for the year to that point. To say there are a glut of startups in the healthcare space would be an understatement. Yet, it’s still far too difficult for healthcare builders to discover, evaluate, and select the technology solutions they need to power their businesses.
That is what Bobby Guelich saw firsthand when he worked at Oscar Health and TrialSpark, and it’s what spurred him to co-found Elion, a digital health technology marketplace company that launched with $3.3 million in seed funding on Tuesday.
“We struggled to find solutions that could meet our needs. There was no information available publicly to help us efficiently compare vendors. And we frequently had to make several of these decisions at once under tight timelines, which made it difficult to do the level of research we wanted to do to be confident in our decisions,” he said, noting that the problem is only getting worse thanks to recent industry trends, including the explosion in digital health infrastructure companies that can now serve as the building blocks for new healthcare organizations.
“As a result, healthcare companies are increasingly building their underlying technology stacks by purchasing and integrating external solutions, rather than building from scratch.”
Elion provides its customers, who are early stage technology-enabled provider organizations that are thinking through the design of their technology stack and looking to quickly make a number of vendor decisions, with a content-driven marketplace that addresses the key challenges that make the end-to-end vendor discovery, evaluation and selection process so difficult.
The platform includes a taxonomy that helps its customers understand the structure of the vendor landscape, learn how various vendor categories are defined, and quickly develop their vendor consideration set; a marketplace that provide the information they need to understand a given vendor’s capabilities and allow them to efficiently compare their options; and, coming soon, guides and playbooks to provide buyers with the information and context they need to effectively evaluate vendors and make an informed decision.
In the coming months, Elion also plans expand its coverage to serve other healthcare verticals, including payors and life sciences, as well as more established healthcare organizations as they navigate their own vendor selection challenges.
“This is a dramatic improvement from the status quo, which largely involves Googling and reaching out to friends and contacts in the industry. We are building the central independent marketplace where builders can come to quickly get independent information and insights to help them make better, faster technology decisions,” Guelich said.
As the company is just launching its product, it hasn’t yet calculated a specific ROI; however, based on customer interviews, it has determined that the process of researching vendors, developing the consideration set, gathering information and narrowing down to a set of finalists typically takes three to six weeks. Elion, on the other hand, expects to reduce to that to just several days as it continues to deepen the information available in its product and roll out additional features.
In addition, existing healthcare research organizations sell their content for tens of thousands of dollars, in some cases over $100,000, while Elion is providing its content free of charge to the broader healthcare community. That means this information becomes available to companies and stakeholders that otherwise are priced out of traditional research offerings.
“Our product is free to use for healthcare builders, as well as the broader healthcare community. With our public launch we expect to shortly have thousands of users regularly utilizing Elion’s taxonomy, marketplace, and content,” Guelich explained.
“We will be monetizing our product through the vendors on our platform and will kick these efforts off in the near future.”
Elion’s new funding came from NEA, Max Ventures, 8VC, AlleyCorp, Charge Ventures and Floating Point, with additional participation from other healthcare founders and angels, and the company plans to use to build out its product and market insights teams, growing from three full time employees to 10 to 20 people over the next year.
The capital also go toward building out Elion’s marketplace product, including more in-depth vendor profiles, which means adding more information to vendor profiles to give builders additional context as they’re doing their vendor research, along with product reviews and expert guidance.
“We frequently hear from builders that they want to speak with others who have implemented solutions in a particular area or previously worked with a given vendor. We will be introducing offerings such as curated customer review-driven recommendations and access to expert insights to support these asks,” said Guelich.
Finally, the money will be used for content development and go-to-market efforts, including support Elion’s ability to deliver more resources aimed at helping early-stage builders with their key questions and challenges. For example, additional vendor category buyer’s guides and playbooks aimed at helping builders create their foundational technology stack.
“Our ambition is to catalyze technology adoption across the healthcare industry, and ultimately enable startups and incumbents alike to deliver better care faster,” Guelich said.
Go to Publisher: VatorNews