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December 14, 2006

Health Care: A Changing Industry with Great Investment Potential

By Michigan Growth Capital Symposium

ANN ARBOR, MI -- (December 14, 2006) -- The health care industry has become a phenomenon unto itself. With expectations from both patients and practitioners on the rise, a constant whirlwind of technological discoveries feeding the market, and the delicate balance of costs, the global health care arena remains one of the hottest hot spots.

“There are two conflicting agendas, both nationally and worldwide. One is better treatment for better living at any cost, and the other is trying to contain the cost of health care,” said Mary Campbell, general partner and founder of Ann Arbor-based EDF Ventures, an investor in early-stage health care and information technology companies. Campbell is also the new president of the Michigan Venture Capital Association.

Campbell says small molecule drugs, biologics and medical devices are the focus of today’s investors as the health care industry continues to gain attention. She sees particular investment potential in medical devices, a developing area in which Michigan sits in a favorable position. Michigan’s strong emphasis on life science and pharmaceutical research and development, along with its engineering expertise, gives the state potential for a breakthrough reputation in a booming market. “Michigan definitely is a player in the life-sciences and wants to both create new companies here as well as strengthen those that exist.”

EDF is based in Michigan but has a global footprint. Campbell says it’s important to cast a wide net when harvesting investments. “EDF is market driven, focusing on the best opportunities it can find, in healthcare and information technologies,” she said. “Some of the best will be located in Michigan; others of the best will be located elsewhere. Venture investing is a team sport played on a national, or even global, playing field. When we can capture the home team advantage we will - we also will play many away games.”

Campbell finds the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium to be a strong home field advantage. “It is the event in Michigan, and arguably the event in the Great Lakes states to bring together entrepreneurs and capitalists. And it serves a dual purpose. One is, of course, to introduce interesting investment opportunities to investors with an interest, but the other and equally important for the strength of the venture capital industry in the middle of the country is providing an opportunity, a magnet if you will, to draw together venture capitalist from within the region and outside the region.”

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