Startups & the HITLAB World Cup
Written by: Omri Shor, the Co-founder and CEO of MediSafe, the leading medication management platform—connecting patients and health providers to improve health outcomes and better understand how people take medication.
In 2012, we were just three guys from Israel who had a global healthcare vision and mission: develop a technological daily companion to manage your health. We focused on addressing one of the most important aspects of health and wellness— medication management, which involves not just following doctor’s orders, but also obtaining the medication and staying in contact with providers. From there, we developed MediSafe, which is now one of the world’s leading medication management platforms.
How did we get here? We were passionate about making an impact and were looking for people and places that shared our goals and not necessarily our backgrounds. We met with everyone we could and entered MediSafe into numerous competitions. One of them HITLAB's 2013 competition, where we were semifinalists. MediSafe didn’t win the grand prize, but we were able to make valuable connections, receive great advice, and expand our visibility among prominent healthcare leaders and investors.
Since then, we’ve gone on to win two healthcare challenges, raise millions of dollars, and increase our team of three to 14 people! When we introduced ourselves to HITLAB in 2013, we had about 50,000 downloads. Today, MediSafe has been downloaded over one million times on Google Play and iTunes; is integrated with Apple’s HealthKit platform; and has impacted individuals, families, providers, and more. Not bad for a little startup with a big dream!
Last week, the 2014 HITLAB World Cup finalists were announced, and I congratulate them as well as all of the intrepid companies who entered the challenge. From my point of view, it doesn’t matter if you win or lose the HITLAB World Cup. What matters to me is that you are pouring your heart, soul, and expertise into developing a pioneering product that will solve a serious issue. It’s not easy to create a successful product, but it can be done.
My advice to the HITLAB World Cup finalists and all aspiring startups is simple: FOCUS! Focus on your product and how it addresses a very specific problem. Make sure you have a way of proving that your solution not only works, but is also a good fit to the market you are entering. Focus on creating a team that is passionate. The people you hire don’t need to be experts in the market you’re entering. They need to be extremely talented and have that innate drive to take your product to the next level. And lastly, focus on yourself. Running a startup can overtake your life, but that doesn’t mean you have to go it alone. You are part of a team, a family, a community. Make sure to stay connected with them. They are an extension of you and your dreams.
HITLAB is now part of my community, and I encourage all of you to make it part of yours. They have been an invaluable resource to MediSafe, and I hope they will be for you and your company.
About Omri Shor:
Omri ‘Bob’ Shor is co-founder and CEO of MediSafe, an award winning, data-driven Medication Management Platform, designed to understand the personal causes of non-adherence and to use this information in real time to create better patient engagement and raise medication adherence.
Inspired to create MediSafe with his brother after their diabetic father accidentally double-dosed on insulin, Shor drew on his considerable entrepreneurship experience to successfully develop and bring the product to market in less than one year. MediSafe continues to receive support from the Microsoft Accelerator for Windows Azure, after graduating its inaugural program for early stage, mobile & cloud-based startups.
Previously, Shor served as a marketing and product manager for legal app developer Masadit Software, where he increased the company’s roster from eight to 2,000 clients, enabling it to reach sustainable profitability. Prior to that, he managed a department of twenty-five salespeople for Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel’s most widely circulated newspaper.
Since 2012, Shor has been a leader of Entrepreneurs in Jeans, a Boston-sponsored organization promoting the entrepreneurial scene in his hometown of Haifa, Israel. He has served in the Israel Defense Forces, where he commanded a paratroopers’ unit.
Shor received an MBA in Entrepreneurship & Strategy, cum laude, from The College of Management - Academic Studies (COMAS) in Rishon LeZion, Israel. He lives in Haifa with his wife and two children.
MediSafe is the leading medication management platform – connecting patients and health providers to improve health outcomes and better understand how people take medication. Inspired by the accidental insulin overdose of its co-founders’ father, MediSafe’s intuitive, singularly designed mobile app – now the most downloaded and highest rated in its category – was first to sync medication reminders between devices of families and caregivers. The MediSafe platform now includes web and SMS sync via branded solutions with pharmaceutical companies, HMOs, pharmacies, electronic medical/health records companies (EMR, EHR) and more. MediSafe also aggregates anonymous patient behavior data for pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, serving as a bridge between patients and health providers, improving health outcomes while benefiting all stakeholders across the healthcare ecosystem. MediSafe’s App can be downloaded from both Google Play and iTunes.