On March 14, Connector.ID’s Meredith moderated a panel with several healthtech startups making waves in the industry as we know it. In attendance were Nathanael Faibis, CEO of Alodokter, Vinita Choolani, CMO of INEX Innovations Exchange, and Anda Waluyo Sarpadan, COO of Sehati and TeleCTG. Here are some key takeaways from the panel:

    1. What’s in an ideal team? The right combination of passion and skill. To join a healthtech startup, one needs to be motivated and driven enough to endure sleepless nights and the hustle, grind, and uncertainty of startup life. This requires truly believing in the product and the potential impact it may have on society. On the other hand, skills are extremely important – even if you have all the passion in the world, you must still have the right skills (or at least be willing to learn).
    2. It’s not just creating one product; it’s creating an ecosystem. Anda of Sehati and TeleCTG emphasized her team’s approach of creating a holistic solution to the health problem she is trying to address. Rather than just creating one product, she is addressing the issue from beginning to end, creating the infrastructure necessary to implement her TeleCTG innovation which creates a portable, on-the-go CTG device for pregnant women to check maternal health and send data. Meanwhile, Sehati is a mobile app that answers pregnant womens’ most pressing questions, schedules doctors’ appointments, provides an journal interface, and calculates pregnancy condition.
    3. To be number one, you need to do the dirty work. The secret to being #1 on the app store in Indonesia? Nothing extraordinary. Nathanael explains that being number one simply means working hard and consistently to validate your ideas and create something that your user loves.
    4. Local presence is key to market dominance. Vinita recalled INEX’s time in Australia, where they went from millions in market share to zero after local competitors stepped in, undercutting her entire business. Because those local competitors could quickly pivot and respond to demand – saving on time and money -, her business had no chance. Now, she is setting up shop in Indonesia and has a local office here, where she hopes she can fulfill the demand for her groundbreaking innovations in ovarian cancer detection
    5. Partnerships – important, but not essential. Lastly, a hot debate erupted over whether or not partnership and collaboration are essential to a startup’s growth. While Anda and Vinita noted that partnerships were quite vital to their startups’ success, Nathanael gave a different point of view. While partnerships can be important, one does not necessarily need a partnership at every step of the way. There are some things that you can do yourself, and if that is the most efficient way then it’s the way to go.

The Deep Dive on Healthtech was one of the most exciting and well-attended events at BLOCK71 to date. We look forward to the next Deep Dive and are grateful to BLOCK71 for inviting us to participate in such a thought-provoking panel.

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