North American Team Intends to Capture the Transformational Potential of Health Technology
Vancouver, British Columbia – GlobeNewsWire - June 4th, 2019 – The Relentless Venture Fund (“Relentless”) has announced new team additions to power their unique health mission. The team is growing with the addition of advisors, who collectively, enhance the team’s deep network and lens required for disruption in health engagement.
Alison Twiner, former Group Director for Global Marketing Solutions at Facebook and current Vice Chair of Canada’s Heart and Stroke Foundation joins along with Todd Humphrey, J. Kelly Hoey and Zach Bell.
Todd Humphrey is a Co-Founder and former Chief Commercial Officer of the digital health tech company, LEAGUE and most recently appointed as Senior Vice-President Digital and Fan Experience for the new Seattle NHL franchise. Kelly Hoey is a well-known North American tech industry influencer, author of ‘Build Your Dream Network’ and previously co-founded a mobile tech accelerator in NYC. Zach Bell, retired Canadian champion cyclist and RBC Olympian, joins the Relentless roster of professional athletes and Olympians contributing unique health insights.
Managing Partner Brenda Irwin stated, “growing the team has been critical to manage the accelerated pace of opportunities in health tech. We are dedicated to investment in personalized, enabling technologies. As many health issues associated with aging have identifiable risk, we prioritize investments that either prevent or delay disease onset by capitalizing on the power of an engaged and informed individual.”
Global healthcare spending continues to rise dramatically and is projected to exceed $10 trillion by 2022. Two of the fundamental driving factors are (1) life expectancy climbing with the number of people over the age of 65 exceeding 11% of the global population, and (2) the parallel rise of non-communicable diseases led predominantly with heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The 2019 Global Health Care Outlook published earlier this year by Deloitte, underscored the need to deliver more resources to both prevention and early intervention. The report highlights that more digital technologies are needed to improve engagement, enable convenience-driven access to care, and nurture a two-way relationship between patient and healthcare practitioners for the long term.
The Relentless technology and business advisory group adds to the expertise of the investment team that includes Venture Partners Shane Luke and Denis Ho. As a veteran in the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning for wearable technology, performance athletics, and injury prevention Shane’s background is a masterful team fit. In prior roles including Chief Product Officer at Recon Instruments and Director of Product at Nike, Shane has developed several consumer wearable technology products, including the Nike FuelBand and the Recon Jet, the first wearable heads up display for sports. Shane also has a deep background in enterprise software development, and extensive experience in the startup world, including his own AI start up BlueMesh. Always working at the leading edge of new product development, Shane is Senior Director of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence for Global Digital Innovation at Nike, Inc.
Denis Ho adds to the team’s bench strength in both healthcare and social impact investment. Previously leading the healthcare venture capital group at BDC Capital and later operating a social impact fund, Denis offers a rare combination of venture capital and mission focused insights. Rounding out the team is fund analyst, elite cyclist and member of Canada’s national sailing team, Isabella Bertold.
Artificial intelligence and consumer-centric platforms that use data to provide more personalized health care are at the heart of industry disruption. “We are building a team with unique entrepreneurial insights into performance, use of data and health management,” stated Brenda Irwin. “Team Relentless understands the transformative potential and promise of human data and how not only athletes can optimize performance, but also how everyone can live better lives leveraging the use of digital technology.”
Investigating new ways for precision data collection and use by consumers for health management has been driving Relentless since Brenda and 4x Olympian Simon Whitfield co-founded the sport and fitness focused Relentless Pursuit Partners angel investment group.
Relentless’ investment in Canary Medical is a textbook case of patient empowerment and the promise of data impacting care. With embedded sensor technology and data analytics, Canary will take virtual health and remote monitoring to new levels with a patient’s entire care team.
Alison Twiner concludes that “the team is pioneering a new approach to health care investing with a commitment to the holistic impact technology will have on an individual’s longevity. It is a thrilling time to be involved with a team that is capitalizing on major tech’s growing interest in personal health engagement.”