The worldwide medical device market is worth $400bn with this value distributed across Europe, America and the Asia-Pacific region. However, introducing a new device to the market is complex and fraught with many difficulties. I spoke with Rani Shifron, medical device expert and Founder of Healthier Globe, to better understand how he advises medical device companies all over the world to launch products and achieve their goals. I was able to contact and speak to Rani in Israel quickly and conveniently using the Biotechspert platform. You can gain advice from Rani on Medical Device commercialization in the same way here.
Q: What is ‘Healthier Globe’?
Healthier Globe is a globally based consultancy resource, with extensive expertise in medical devices from concept to commercialization. We use a holistic approach, offering the entire spectrum of knowledge and experience that a company needs to bring a device to market. These may include developing the business plan: putting together aggressive go-to market strategies (or reviewing and revising that which may already exist), also including marketing rollout by country and region, planning for and accessing funding for each critical stage, product design (electronic, software, industrial and mechanical, branding) solutions, regulatory affairs, patent management, reimbursement, manufacturing, human resources and quality control; these are some of the fundamental areas that need to be considered when bringing a device to market. Along with these, we also support ongoing the implementation and achievement of company objectives.
Our team of experts, which we are particularly proud of, is the most successful and seasoned in all areas of medical devices business that one can find. The purpose of working with this team is to enhance the chances of winning big in this challenging field.
Q: What was the inspiration behind ‘Healthier Globe’?
I’ve been in this business for 30 years, my entire career, and I’ve experienced the hurdles to bringing devices to market first-hand. We’ve created an ecosystem of all the different service providers, on a local and global level, to help companies get to market. Most entrepreneurs focus on technical details of a product, and less on proving the clinical value. Healthier Globe has been successful because we help entrepreneurs demonstrate the value of the device to the right stakeholders.
Q: What are the main challenges in bringing a medical device to market?
There are plenty of them, but all are solvable. The challenges vary from product to product and type of market niche, so it’s difficult to generalize. From my experience, many companies struggle to get the Clinical Validation stage right. Clinical Validation involves research and proof that the device is effective in the target market and different markets may have very specific requirements. Also difficult are missionary sales, where a sales team needs to educate people about the merits of a particular device before a sale can be closed. The multi-layered complexity of bringing a medical device to market is illustrated by the flow diagram below!
Q: What are your goals for Healthier Globe, and in your own career?
The goal for Healthier Globe is to become a true global player, and we are working in partnership with several different client companies, coming out with new initiatives and products that we hope can help us achieve this goal.
I myself am a mentor, entrepreneur and investor. I personally invest in specific products I like, to help bring them to market. My personal goal is to enable provisions of medical care to the poorer parts of the globe, to truly make this a Healthier Globe.
Q: How have your experiences before Healthier Globe prepared you for your current role?
I’ve helped bring dozens of products to world markets successfully taking them through all the stages listed in the diagram above, products which have been sold in the billions of dollars to date. I actually had positions in companies in all of these areas. I was involved in 2 start ups, and was involved in transforming their value from $0 to $100 million and more. The second company we took public, spun off a technology and then ended up getting sold to one of the leading giants who happened to also be one of our customers (since then a bigger company has bought the buying company out and the original company has more than tripled its results providing equipment to several key industry players.
Despite completing all my formal education (BSEE, MBA, etc.), working for those start ups was my most intense learning experience, especially in the world of medical devices which is a relatively new field and did not have the learning resources and experience base when I started out. Actually working hands-on through the different regulatory, clinical and other steps was the best learning experience in my career.
See Rani’s full profile, with his listed areas of expertise, on his Biotechspert profile, here
Q: How has expert advice helped you through your career in the past?
Expert advice is always needed to save lots of time and lots of money, because they already know how to do what’s needed and may have unique insights and approaches. They are worth the time and money invested in them, because of the savings you can make in the future. Also, this can reduce the chances of erroneous decisions which can and often do result in the failure of a project.
It’s important to always have a team of experts around you, in different disciplines, to really be able to drive your idea forward. Teamwork is critical to ensuring progress in a desired time frame. Experts help to create value for your company and your product.
(Note- the Biotechspert ‘Expert Panel’ feature now allows you to quickly connect with a number of experts in a range of different fields. Click this link to view our new Cambridge Minds Group!)
Q: Are there any particular mentors you’ve had during your career that have particularly influenced you?
I’ve had help from several specialists in different fields over the course of my career, that have helped me to access different markets. For example, I was working to develop a new business in Japan for several years. The specialist I worked with there allowed me to save time and money enabling a major successful launch of the business in Japan.
In medical devices, there is no shortcut for all countries. To be successful, one must adapt to the needs of each country including local customization, based on different requirements, regulatory and financial, that vary between healthcare systems. You need an expert with inside knowledge to help you access a particular market. That’s where I see potential for Biotechspert and Healthier Globe collaborating. By improving the global access to specialist local medical device market knowledge.