New Companies Are Riding Vermont’s Health Tech Sector Boom
Source: Seven Days
Vermont earned a pushpin on the global health technology industry map decades ago when homegrown entrepreneurs founded BioTek Instruments, the Winooski life science instruments company now known as Agilent, and IDX Systems, the South Burlington health information technology firm. While those businesses have since been sold to bigger, out-of-state companies, Vermont has been incubating a new generation of cutting-edge health tech enterprises.
Investors have poured millions of dollars into these companies in hopes of getting in on the ground floor of the next game-changing software, medical device or biological product. A new venture fund, Features Capital, has even popped up to invest in health tech startups.
People with ties to IDX and BioTek continue to serve as investors and mentors for the new wave of companies. The region’s two major academic medical centers — the University of Vermont Medical Center and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center — are helping staff spin ideas into commercial ventures. Established entrepreneurs still choose to launch companies in Vermont because of the lifestyle it offers. And the state’s one degree of separation continues to breed collaborations.
Combine all this with a global demand for health technology that’s only grown during the pandemic, and you’ve got a prescription for success.
Since it can be hard to know whom to pay attention to in a world as fast-evolving as tech, Seven Days spoke to the leaders of five Vermont companies in various stages of growth: Vernal Biosciences, PanicMechanic, Biocogniv, Voi, and Healthy Design, (Read about a sixth company, CoreMap, and its cofounder and CEO, Sarah Kalil, here).
These companies, whose products range from artificial intelligence programs that can predict deadly diseases to a device that can offer a more humane way to keep intubated patients safe, represent the vast diversity of the state’s tech industry — and its potential to help shape health care’s future.
Read the profiles here.