Last year, U.S. venture capital investment dollars declined for the first time in three years. With analysts blaming regulatory concerns and economic ambiguity for the slowdown, only the most promising sectors poised for significant growth managed to beat the industry-wide trend and attract record venture capital in 2012.
One of the emerging industries to draw huge interest from venture capitalists in 2012 was mHealth. Although venture capitalists invested $26.5 billion in 3,698 deals in 2012 (a 10 percent dip in dollars from 2011), the mHealth sector still drew venture capital investments to the tune of $907.7 million.
The top mHealth deals of 2012 included Insight Venture Partner’s $40 million Series A financing to Kinsser Software and Qualcomm’s $25.5 million investment in Telcare.
Despite the fact that capital investments on mobile healthcare grew less aggressively in the last half of 2012, the overall numbers increased year-over-year. And that’s a positive sign for 2013, a year in which some believe mHealth-related venture capital investments could top $1 billion.
“We expect that many people will be disappointed that investment in the mHealth space did not continue on the trajectory it started out on in the first half of the year,” observed Cassie Arnold, managing editor of Mobile Health Market News. “However, we think a more stable investment environment is better for the industry in the long run.”
mHealth’s ability to draw record investment in 2013 could largely depend on factors extraneous to the immediate mHealth industry.
“If Washington policymakers can get the U.S. financial house in order, we do believe we can have a very solid 2013,” says Mark Heesen, president of the National Venture Capital Association. “There are a lot of corporations sitting on the sidelines, wanting to acquire more companies.”