Call it “Health 2.0,” “mHealth,” “personalized medicine,” “connected health,” or any one of a dozen other terms used to describe it – there’s no denying that the Digital Health sector is revolutionizing the way individuals, institutions, and nations manage health issues. From turning passive patients into active healthcare consumers, to remaking the insurance industry, to impacting the way governments fund and regulate healthcare, digital health technology is on a growth trajectory that promises to shoot skywards.

Israel is turning into a world center of digital health technology, according to a new report by Start-Up Nation Central, an Israel-based information source that follows and reports on Israeli start-ups working in a wide variety of technology-related areas, there are almost 400 companies in Israel working in the digital health sector. Those firms received total investments of $182.8 million in 2016 – far exceeding the $143.9 million the sector attracted in 2015 – and much of that money was invested in seed and A-round deals.

From health-tech leader to digital health-tech leader

It makes sense. Israel is a world leader in precisely the technologies that are fueling the digital health revolution – including sensor technology, telecom and network tech, big data, and smartphone and app tech. Israeli companies are active in five digital health subsectors – including Health Analytics, Telemedicine, Clinical Workflow, Wearables & Sensors, and Personal Health Tools, a subsector in which 174 companies (45% of all Israeli digital health firms) are active.

For investors, Israeli digital health firms are a win-win proposition. For example, although 77.5% of Personal Health Tools companies are in early stages of funding (40% in pre-seed, 37.5% in seed- stage), over 80% of these companies’ products are fully-developed or in advanced stages of development (over 50% of products are fully developed, 30% in alpha/beta). Similarly, 53.8% of Health Analytics Companies have fully-developed products, although most companies have raised only seed (24.3% of companies) or A-round (24.3% of companies).

The Israeli opportunity in B2C digital health platforms

Indeed, the Israeli digital health sector offers excellent opportunities for investors who want to get in early on the “next big thing.” Moreover, that opportunity is growing, especially in the Personal Health Tools sector. Companies are integrating Wearables, Sensors, Big Data Analytics, and Telemedicine platforms to form powerful B2C healthcare platforms and products, combining wearables with additional services, such as personalized insights based on users’ behavior. It is just a matter of time before one of these companies develops a breakout product or service that will make it a world leader in one of the digital health subsectors.

Digital health is clearly turning into one of Israel’s best tech opportunities – and to provide a fuller picture, Start-Up Nation Central is offering its Digital Health Report 2016, for free download. In the report, readers will discover a plethora of facts about Israel’s growing role in the digital health sector – where Israeli tech has been, and where it is going. The sector is attracting the attention of investors from around the world – including international tech firms, hospitals, HMOs, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, and governmental institutions. The opportunities are there; to find out more about them, download the Start-Up Nation Central report from here.

Sharon Shapira manages the Digital Health Sector Strategy and activities at Start-Up Nation Central. An intelligence analyst in an elite IDF intelligence unit, Sharon was responsible for analyzing and processing intelligence in one of the unit's top divisions. She holds a BSc in Biotechnology (cum laude) from Tel-Aviv University.

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