A joint program between EPFL Innovation Park and Groupe Mutuel
Call for Application 2022 Opening soon!
Next Roadshow November 17th
Program Duration 9 months
May 28, 2024

Tech4Eva Opening Conference 2024 - The Recap

Recap Tech4Eva Opening Conference 2024 -Tech4Eva Announcing the 2024 Cohort and Debiotech Prize Winner

The start-up acceleration program of Groupe Mutuel and the EPFL Innovation Park is supporting 17 start-ups this year from a wide range of fields, such as Menstrual & Maternal health, reproductive medicine, wellbeing, or oncology for women. With a record number of 189 start-ups from 45 countries applying, this call for application highlights the growing global interest in this field.

The Tech4Eva Opening Conference brought together 250+ Femtech stakeholders in the ecosystem and was kicked off by Anna Soederlind of Groupe Mutuel and Jerome Michaud from Tech4Eva followed by a keynote from Laura Santos-Carreras of Helbling Technik. Lan Zuo Gillet from EPFL Innovation Park took the stage to introduce the Tech4Eva 2024 program. Laurent-Dominique Piveteau from Debiotech announced the recipient of the new Debiotech Prize 2024. Congratulations Luna by Ablatus Therapeutics.

The conference also featured a panel discussion titled "How to Bring Your Solution to the Market." This panel was moderated by Marta Gehring of Tech4Eva and included a lineup of distinguished speakers: Stefan Troller from Helbling Technik, Laurent-Dominique Piveteau of Debiotech, and Chung Looi of Luna By Ablatus.

Bridging the Gap Between Femtech Research & Market Entry, by Laura Santos-Carreras, Helbling Technik

The journey from Femtech innovation to market entry is filled with distinctive challenges and opportunities. During her keynote at the Tech4Eva conference, Laura Santos-Carreras shared insights from Helbling Technik’s extensive experience in MedTech development, focusing on the crucial steps necessary for successful Femtech ventures.

Key Takeaways:

1. Strategic Planning: Laura emphasized the importance of start-ups developing a robust roadmap early in their journey. This helps align the product with market needs and prepares the team for upcoming regulatory hurdles.

2. Understanding Regulatory Pathways: Navigating the classification and compliance of medical devices is vital for ensuring that innovations meet safety standards and are ready for market entry.

3. Addressing the Gender Data Gap: FemTech must focus on generating clinical data that reflects the specific health needs of women to develop effective solutions.

4. Leveraging Support Networks: Utilizing resources such as incubators and accelerators can provide start-ups with essential guidance and access to strategic partnerships.

The narrative of Femtech innovation, illustrated through the fictional example of “Ella,” underscores the necessity for solutions tailored to the specific physiological and health needs of women. As highlighted by Laura, the Femtech sector holds immense potential for enhancing women’s health through targeted technological innovations.

New Strategic Partnership with Debiotech

Luna by Ablatus has been awarded the Debiotech Prize, recognizing their innovative medical device with 100,000 CHF worth of technical support. This accolade highlights projects that are technologically innovative, beneficial to patients and have strong market potential.

The support from Debiotech will help Luna by Ablatus advance its technology, poised to make significant impacts in healthcare. The prize not only provides vital resources but also validates the importance of their work in improving patient outcomes. This award underscores the importance of investing in technologies that address critical healthcare challenges and enhance patient care.

Laurent-DominiquePiveteau CEO of Debiotech commentedThe project by Ablatus impressed us with the elegance of its solution and the real benefit it represents for patients suffering from a very disabling condition. This project is perfectly in line with what has driven the company for over 30 years: patient-centered innovation. But we would also like to congratulate all the candidates for the Debiotech Prize. The high quality of the projects identified by Tech4Eva made our selection task particularly difficult.

How to Bring Medtech Solutions to the Market: Key Insights from Experts

Navigating the complexities of introducing medtech products requires a nuanced approach, as discussed in the recent panel “How to Bring Medtech Solutions to the Market.” Industry leaders shared insights on engaging stakeholders and managing development risks effectively.

Engaging Stakeholders

Successful product development hinges on understanding diverse perspectives—from doctors and nurses to payers and patients. Leaders emphasized the importance of involving payers early and engaging with foundations to facilitate access and gather feedback.

Managing Development Costs and Risks

Understanding the nature of the product, whether technology or business-driven, is crucial in managing costs and minimizing risks. Forming transparent partnerships can provide cost benefits and strategic advantages, helping to safeguard against competition.

Regulatory Approval and Market Access

Gaining regulatory approval should be approached methodically, focusing on one step at a time to avoid overwhelming the process. It’s vital to determine who will pay for the product and invest in detailed market research, which can yield valuable insights and strengthen investor communications.

The panel concluded that a strategic, informed approach is essential for the successful market introduction of medtech solutions. Keeping engagements with all stakeholders open and data-driven helps in adapting to market needs and ensures credible and confident product development.

Jérome Mariethoz Head of Health & Pensions for Private Individuals of Groupe Mutuel closed the event by saying : "It shows the taboo we broke down today. In a Swiss very conservative country, a middle-aged guy, testosterone-driven, is talking about menstrual health and menopause and such a broad element. I think it simply testaments the way we are moving into topics and also shows that nowadays it’s not taboo anymore."