Excite 2017 Case Studies
In the quarter running up to Excite, Sinan selected 7 SMEs across Health + IoT from 7 countries across the UK and EU. The presented case studies demonstrate the reality of visiting China for business, and the clear advantages of adopting a structured entry approach through Excite:
1 – Bioinformatics
A leading SME currently supplies proprietary cancer sequencing software to molecular genetics labs in hospitals globally. Through Excite, they sought to assess the China market with a view to launch a tailored business model for the region.
China has launched a 15-year precision medicine strategy harnessing the power of clinical genomics and big data. The client’s bioinformatics suite for rapid cancer screening directly addresses China’s dire lack of clinical pathologists.
During Excite, Sinan identified a listed Chinese software platform provider serving genetic testing laboratories and physicians. Based on their in-depth understanding of China’s health landscape, the client was able to formulate a joint execution strategy supported by an equity investment. Together their China solution aims to reduce per patient hospitalisation times through individualised medical models.
2 – Analytical Instruments
Two niche start-ups are each developing high throughput laboratory instruments for the analysis of biologics and newborn infant samples. China represented a priority market where the clients could benefit from both a first-mover advantage and accelerated product development.
During Excite, Sinan organised manufacturing facilty tours with leading Chinese retailers who demonstrated a track record in the respective instrumentation segments. Their in-house end-to-end component fabrication facilities support accelerated product development. A typical prototype product could be rolled out within 45 days, compared with 6-8 months in EU.
For our clients’ China strategy this meant they could iterate 3-5 product versions per year as they adapt their technology into a portfolio to suit the Chinese market. Following a thorough technical assessment, the clients developed a route-to-market covering product design, manufacturing, and retail. Roadmaps included an equity investment by the Chinese partner.
3 – Medical Devices
A pioneering SME in the field of resorbable stents offers surgery patients an alternative to currently-used permanent stents. Temporary stents are the fastest growing stent segment, and currently occupy only 5-10% market share in EU. China localisation of the client’s product offers a unique opportunity to meet their development, launch and exit milestones.
Domestic medtech companies serving China’s mid-to-high market for Class II devices have been rapidly usurping the market share of foreign producers, buoyed by favourable reimbursement strategies and lower costs.
During Excite, Sinan identified several from among China’s leading stent developers. Based on their expertise, our client could compare a selection of commercialisation strategies. These ranged from equity investment overseas to support EU product development, to incubation among Chinese CROs for eventual registration as a domestic product in China.
4 – Internet Plus (AI–IoT)
Three leading developers of hardware / software solutions are targeting the growing Industry 4.0 market. This is an active but diverse market in China, and one prioritised by recent ‘Internet Plus’ policies.
The domestic market leaders that have emerged in this space are testing new monetisation strategies in an ever-changing internet era dominated by Baidu, Ali Baba & Tencent (BAT). Our clients instead offer a focussed technology solution targeting either of automotive traffic planning or factory monitoring / maintenance. These large market segments are complex, and benefit the most from AI–IoT solutions that offer incremental improvements that can scale province-wide.
During Excite, Sinan identified private-owned companies across the industry vertical of relevance to our clients. The China partners demonstrated a track record in securing government bids worth 10s millions RMB to manage province-level contracts in the areas of Intelligent Traffic Monitoring (ITS) and integrated factory safety detection systems.
In an area typically dominated by state-owned enterprises, new sweeping regulatory changes are providing high value opportunities for foreign companies willing to localise in China as part of a joint entity with a domestic leader. Driving this growth are government awards, corproate financing, and venture capital funds.