Starting any company in New York can be a daunting process - the rent is high, talent can be difficult to find, and Venture Capital works a little different than in the valley. However, it is one of the best locations in the world to launch a Healthcare related venture.
There is a strong Angel community and many decision makers in healthcare administration. There is also a strong contingency of existing startups here that have done quite well. This list is focused on helping a new Healthcare company get off of the ground.
- Get to know the startup accelerators here in New York. In particular Blueprint Health is narrowly focused on Healthcare (non-device/pharma) startups. They incubated our Medical Specialty Business in 2013 and have been a fantastic support resource. Nearly half of our investor base came through the program, and also, importantly, it's a great group of people to work with.
- Attend the Digital Health Conference, which usually occurs in the fall. This is a great event to meet key players in the New York area and beyond. The lectures are thought-provoking and there tend to be many angles covered on both the provider and the payer sides.
- Read up on the latest trends in the industry. In particular, we found the HBR healthcare articles over the past year to be particularly helpful. Also, Clay Christensen's book, The Innovator's Prescription is effective at laying out some of the problems that the Healthcare Industry faces. This is a must-read for any business that is looking to disrupt a complicated industry.
- Healthcare Meetup Groups are a great way to start networking. Health 2.0 NYC is a great place to get started. It's the largest Healthcare Innovation Meetup in the world, and if you can, find an opportunity to present.
- This applies more generally to all startups, but try to attend several 'demo days' in the city, and try to get on the calendar of several Angel groups. Practicing, and being part of the community are an important part of the process. The healthcare community is fairly friendly and most of the entrepreneurs are willing to take the time to meet with you.
Starting a Healthcare company in New York has been one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life. It is definitely worth it, and I encourage anyone who wants to make a difference in such an important field to make the plunge. Good luck!