Spring is here in St. Louis. Along with the sunshine and warmth comes hope for new relationships and new opportunities.
GlobalSTL has launched its request for applications for the fifth annual GlobalSTL Health Innovation Summit (GHIS), scheduled for October 2021.
GlobalSTL, an initiative of BioSTL, was created to work with St. Louis’ large corporations and health systems as their go-to innovation sourcing partner. We first identify and uncover the most significant pain points and innovation needs. Based upon those needs, we leverage our global innovation ecosystem relationships to identify mature startups that have solutions that directly solve the pain points and have high probability to scale in the US market.
When there is a fit, we help those startups with business development, US market access, and business model strategy. Once they are ready, we provide strategic stakeholder relationships and business development opportunities with our health care member organizations.
St. Louis is a fantastic ecosystem for startups to accelerate or enter the US market with many large health care companies headquartered here. A little-known fact is that St. Louis has more health care delivery purchasing power than Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Nashville, and Chicago. We define health care delivery as providers, payers, PBMs, and health services companies.
The GHIS was started in 2017 to:
We’ve had great success thus far in accomplishing this mission as we now have 17 health care organizations on the GlobalSTL platform. These organizations represent five Midwestern states and a total of $360 billion in health care delivery buying power, which is nearly 10% of US health care spend.
Additionally, the adoption pipeline has greatly improved as 47% of startups that are invited to the GlobalSTL Summit sign a business deal with at least one of the GlobalSTL member orgs.
These deals range from pilots up to scaled deployments and $50M equity investments.
We accomplish this by having a demand-driven focus and invite only startups that fit within the innovation priorities and needs of this $360B buying power cohort.
In the seven years since we launched GlobalSTL, we’ve spent a lot of time building trust and relationships with innovation, clinical, and business unit leaders inside these health care organizations. This gives us unique insight into what really moves the needle inside US health care.
The other way we know what is game-changing innovation is our Summit curation model. Once the GlobalSTL Health team receives the applications, we diligence and create a list of ~30 finalists. We then put those finalists in front of our colleagues at the 18 health care member orgs and ask them to rank and score the 30 finalists in relation to their needs, business model, and interests.
This unique crowdsourcing engine ensures that we invite the best companies to the Summit. Historically we have invited somewhere around 15 companies to each event. We are not focused on a specific number, but rather bringing the highest quality and relevant companies to our members.
The Summit is an intimate gathering of ~175 Midwest health care leaders and the invited startups. It’s not a traditional booth-based exhibition style meeting. The agenda is focused on business development. We first educate the startups about the unique complexities of Midwest/US health care and what it takes to succeed here. Then each startup gets a chance to do a quick 6-minute pitch, followed by curated 1:1 meetings between you and teams from the strategics who already identified your solution as strong interest.
For the first few years, the Summit was primarily for international startups. In 2020, our members asked us to open it to US-based innovations. The Summit is now open to startups from any location, and we want to continue bringing the top global health care innovation.
Some of the best digital health companies in the world have started their US journeys in St. Louis at the GHIS. There are even a few who have gone on to become $B+ unicorns.
We had to host the Summit virtually in 2020. It is our plan and intention to work closely with public health officials and top local event managers to host a safe and high value in person event in October 2021.
If you're eager to enter the US market or access specific customers in the Midwest, we encourage you to visit the website to learn more about the Summit, the innovation shopping list for 2021, and the application process.
If you have any questions, please reach out to Luke Blackburn, who’s organized the Summit since its launch in 2017 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“St. Louis is a hidden gem in health care. I was blown away by the level of innovation and scope of their health care systems. GlobalSTL is THE navigator for startups to connect with St. Louis.”
“If I'm sitting in the U.K. and want to access the U.S. health care system, St. Louis and the GHIS is a very logical place to start. St. Louis is centrally located and has 7 percent of total U.S. health care spend. The GHIS is a curated process, so the companies you meet are interested in the solutions you have. It's a really good investment of your time.”
“The number of meetings GlobalSTL curated for us in the last 24 to 48 hours is probably equivalent to six months of work, in terms of the people, the levels, the quality. We are exploring a second hub outside of Boston and are seriously considering St. Louis. We see this as a very powerful location for us and an influential one as well.”
“St. Louis has been an enormous entry point for us in the U.S. We have our first customers there. I also feel like St. Louis has some similarities with Stockholm, where the key to succeeding is by working together with academia, industry, and researchers. If you can combine those three things together to create an ecosystem, that's a huge opportunity for us. St. Louis has that powerhouse to make that happen.”