EIT ICT Labs' Health & Wellbeing Business Community returns from successful Silicon Valley trip

The fourteen companies who attended as part of the growing pan-European EIT ICT Labs Health and Wellbeing Business Community, returned to Europe earlier this week after an intensive and inspiring week in Silicon Valley.

The 7th Annual Health 2.0 Fall Conference in Santa Clara, was a hive of activity with nearly two thousand visitors expected over the two and a half day event. Promoted as “the best and brightest minds, working at the confluence of health care and technology, are addressing some of the key issues surrounding the delivery of health care” - the event did not disappoint. 

The packed program included over one hundred demos, Nokia Sensing XCHALLENGE winners, new product launches, developer challenge competitions, startups competing to showcase for Venture Capitalists and deep dive information sessions on various topics.

The program allowed visitors to mix and match sessions according to their interests. This enabled excellent opportunities to gain knowledge and to discuss with fellow visitors in between the networking lunches and evening receptions.

One common observation made by the group was that there were a vast number of similar web based and sensor health related solutions in the US market which were quite comparable to current European solutions. Nothing was seen as an outstanding difference. 

After the intense atmosphere of the Health 2.0 event in the Santa Clara Convention Center, the EIT Business Community group headed downtown to San Francisco on Thursday 3rd October, to the impressive Consulate General of the Netherlands, based on the 31st floor of the Montgomery Tower. 

The Netherlands Office of Science & Technology (NOST), led locally by Robert Thijssen organised an excellent program. The spectacular views provided the backdrop for an inspirational combined working lunch with the early afternoon session of presentations from local companies - BioScreen, Gain Fitness, RockHealth, CareCircles (SAP), Each was complemented by lively discussion.

The EIT Business Community then benefited from a session related to local business insight and investor pitch training before the evening session (arranged jointly by NOST and BALT network) was opened by Consul General, Hugo G.von Meijenfeldt who warmly welcomed EIT and the visiting companies, with Dr. Willem Jonker CEO EIT ICT Labs giving further words of welcome. 

Hosted by the lively and entertaining Luke Lightning from BALT networking, the evening continued with a fascinating presentation by Dr. Adam Mendelsohn from NanoPrecision Medical Inc. This was followed by six quick-fire two minute pitches from the European companies. Malay Gandhi from RockHealth then presented, followed by five more European pitches.

There were over one hundred attendees who listened actively, encouraged and discussed. It was a great atmosphere and excellent showcase for the EIT Health and Wellbeing Business Community.

The Friday started with  a visit to NEST GSV, a startup innovation space and focal point for many other activities. The EIT Business Community were greeted by NEST CEO Kayvan Baroumand and Mike Klyszeiko (American Chamber of Commerce). 

The morning session started with an excellent panel of four local experienced investors giving their insight, moderated by Radhika Emens. This gave the group direct and deep insight into the Silicon Valley mentality, the ways of working and the current state of financing. The various follow-on discussions included sharing feedback from the European investment scene.


A walk-around visit of the extensive NEST facilities followed the panel session and closed the morning session.

The afternoon visit to Stanford University Campus started with an introduction by Martha Russell, Executive Director of Media X at Stanford University, well known for her collaborative research initiatives in technology leadership and information sciences. This meeting was followed by a walking tour of the campus under beautiful Californian weather.

The initial feedback from the EIT Business Community group has been extremely positive. The week-long commitment perceived as well worth the effort. Many of the group had pre-arranged side meetings with partners and local contacts and several followed up initial meetings with immediate secondary local meetings. 

For further information please contact Activity Lead Marko Turpeinen

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