I received a new meme from a colleague the other day, they are putting together an e-book for aspiring health-science entrepreneurs and were soliciting contributions based on our experiences. The remit was
- 100 words (or less) on your venture / fund / work.
- 100 words (or less) on your top tips for entrepreneurs in this sector.
It’s a tricky assignment, mainly in trying to avoid clichés and exceeding the word limit. My response (finally) went in as follows:
Bacterial biofilms are a persistent problem for medical devices used in hospital environments, causing infections and mineral blockages that impact patient health and drive up treatment costs. Biofilms form as naturally occurring microbes colonize surfaces in contact with patients, especially in catheters, respiratory tubes, and orthopedic implants. CamStent is developing polymer coatings that can be applied to device surfaces to prevent colonization, interrupting the infectious process before it begins. The company was formed in 2006 in collaboration with chemists at the University of Sheffield and is now preparing for clinical trials of its lead product to prevent urinary tract infections.
Pursue consequential projects with determination and enthusiasm. Have goals that extend all the way to first revenue but execute in incremental steps, achieved at regular intervals, each adding value and reducing risk. Hire capable people who challenge your thinking but who you still look forward to spending time with each day: hire a strong CFO first. Stay virtual, using resources flexibly and reserving cash to respond when problems or opportunities arise. Be confident and persistent: successful development or fundraising often means playing long enough to win. And have a life beyond the business, cultivating people and pastimes that delight you.