When starting or growing a new venture, having a strong network of contacts to turn to for advice can be a game changer.
That’s the goal of Medical Alley’s newest initiative: Medical Alley Starts. This region is home to a wealth of resources and valuable connections, and the Association is uniquely poised to help connect early-stage companies with what they need.
Last week, Medical Alley Association hosted its first ever Ask Me Anything event to directly connect entrepreneurs with a knowledgeable connection in the world of early-stage companies and allow them to ask any questions about startups.
The inaugural event was moderated by Medical Alley’s Vice President of Intelligence, Frank Jaskulke. Joining him was Amrinder Singh, the Director of Venture Capital at Medtronic who has years of experience in selecting and funding promising startups for the global medical device company.
Singh provides a unique window into corporate ventures and many of the questions were focused on how organizations like Medtronic approach funding, as well as how early-stage companies can best position themselves for investment opportunities.
One attendee kicked off the event by asking how a small, fast moving organization can collaborate effectively with a larger, more complex organization like Medtronic. Singh shared that for two organizations to work together, the startup has to be crystal clear about what their end goal is, whether that is to be acquired, investment, proof of concept, or more customers.
Although many people are familiar with angel investors and large venture capital firms, corporate ventures are lesser known. Singh shared that corporate ventures are not so different from other investment institutions. Singh’s advice for dealing with corporate ventures is that it is critical for startups to know what incentivizes an investor and to ensure their organization is hitting that mark.
One attendee had a question about Medtronic’s relationship with the organization after investing. Singh shared that because Medtronic conducts a limited number of investments per year, they take a more involved role in the company. With thousands of employees across the organization, Singh said a large value-add for startups is the ability to forge connections with talented employees across Medtronic.
Although it was only an hour, this event covered a lot of ground. The Medical Alley Association is a connector in the healthcare industry, bringing members from every sector to the same table. Events like this are just one of the many ways that knowledge can be shared across the industry to continue making this region The Global Epicenter of Health Innovation and Care®.