Rockstart launches the world's longest and Europe's first full-year health startup scale program

Rockstart has just launched the world’s longest and Europe’s first full-year health startup scale program. These nine new startups bring them closer to their vision of creating a community with over 100 health startups and scale-ups. It is a hands-on, partner integrated program with more available capital and longer support. The program will take place within the heart of Health Valley, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, a growing healthcare innovation ecosystem with over 20+ health pioneers and a world-renowned medical university. This year’s program is supported by partners such as Gemeente Nijmegen, OostNL, Provincie Gelderland, Noaber Ventures, Sensire, and Boehringer Ingelheim.


Tonko Wedda, Director of Health at Rockstart said;

Working alongside our startups and provincial partners, we are very proud to announce our corporate partners Sensire and Boehringer Ingelheim as pillars under this year’s program. They will both support the program and work closely together with a startup during the Rockstart journey. These unique partnerships will add a great value to our program from which the startups will benefit and give them a boost.


The key success points of this program are its partnerships. Housed on the Novio Tech Campus, Nijmegen, these startups are part of one of the best programs for access to capital, market, expertise and community. Working with Radboud UMC, the world's top medical university for innovation, allows startups to connect with some of the world’s leading experts. Oost NL is a regional investor who helps startups access capital through their large and in-depth knowledge of health investors within the Netherlands as well as further afield. A few doors down sits the organization Health Valley, the largest Life Sciences & Health innovation network in the Netherlands. Health Valley brings with them over 250 health industry partners including hospitals and clinics which provides access to market for the startups. It is all these and other partnerships that are the major factors in the program’s ability to deliver. Additionally, this year Health Valley will co-host the Rockstart Health Demo Day which will be held next March during Health Valley Event 2020. This will allow the startups to showcase to over 1200+ health corporates and investors. Our mentor community has always been an important pillar of the program. They support the start-ups during and after their Rockstart journey and open doors for them both on a national and an international level.

Matthijs Blokhuis, CEO of Noaber stated:

At Noaber we strongly believe the drive, creativity and persistence of entrepreneurs can accelerate the necessary development and adoption of new innovations in health and care. Rockstart is able to nurture and further develop the entrepreneurial drive of its participants. Linked to its valuable ecosystem of healthcare partners, this creates a foundation for generating meaningful outcomes for people, patients and providers.

For Health startups, there are multiple factors which can hamper their growth and development. These barriers to entry include, but are not limited to; product complexity, slow innovation in the sector, funding gaps, and heightened regulations, all increasing the time to market. So for Health startups, what would normally take three months in FinTech could take up to twelve months in Health. This means startups can burn through most of their capital before making any major advancements. The extension of the program timeline was developed to help alleviate these issues. By providing the support needed, it allows the startups to tackle their biggest challenges. Working with pioneers in the industry makes innovation faster, opens up capital opportunities and helps cut through the red tape. 

From capital raising to closing customers, this program has all the benefits of a traditional accelerator but with a time frame more curated to the industry’s restrictions. The Rockstart Health network of mentors, investors, and partners come together even stronger in this year’s program to support this new batch of startups break through the barriers.

Rune Theill, Co-Founder and CEO of Rockstart explains;

Health is one of the three societal themes that Rockstart is focusing on. Building a startup within the health domain is difficult and requires a new approach, and we are therefore excited that we are able to offer longer-term support and provide stronger partnerships than ever before with Rockstart Health.


Cardiomo Care, Inc. (US)

Cardiomo is a US based medtech company that provides wearable continuous remote monitoring with AI engine to deliver real-time, actionable insights to enable early detection of arrhythmias and early warning for heart diseases that preventing life threatening events and ensuring better health through preventive care. Сardiomo patch tracks the vital signs (ECG, heart rate variability, breath rate, skin temperature, activity and sleep quality) and AI-based platform analyzes the data and detects cardiovascular diseases, arrhythmias and cardiac events in real time, and predicts imminent threats and enables detection of changes in patient condition hours before a potentially serious event.

Pera Labs (Turkey)

Pera Labs is a digital health company that uses microfluidic chip technology and artificial intelligence to help fertility clinics reduce their 70% treatment failure rate. With 50 million affected couples annually, we streamline couples’ fertility assessment process and enable clinics to make better treatment decisions — a $30 Billion market every year. We have recently developed a next generation sperm analyzer called Sperman, to use in the fertility clinics. Unlike others, Sperman not only detects, but also selects the healthiest sperm to use in fertilization. Moreover, Sperman is the first and only device that can analyze father’s DNA quality in sperm non-invasively.

Intelligent Observation (US)

Intelligent Observation is a Miami based company that has developed a unique hand hygiene tracking and alert system that reduces healthcare acquired infections in hospitals. Intelligent Observation has developed a proprietary technology platform that is validated to be more accurate, detailed and scalable than anything ever offered in an effort to solve these infections. Among the first customers for its solution Intelligent Observation includes Johns Hopkins, the thought leaders in infection control worldwide.

FIMO (Germany)

FIMO is a data driven solution to improve the quality of life for people suffering from fatigue. Measurements of relevant data within everyday life through an app and a device combined with machine learning make symptoms better understandable and predictable. Also the fatigue gets visible and therapies can be improved. 

BrainTrip (Malta)

BrainTrip has developed, scientifically tested, and validated an electroencephalogram (EEG) based algorithm for the reliable detection of mental impairment. Such impairment can be the result of early- stage dementia. Our algorithm is paired with a third party EEG and used in elderly care facilities as a screening tool for dementia. Medical dementia workups are expensive and invasive, therefore having a screening tool to determine whether such procedures are worthwhile is of great benefit to patients and physicians. Our method works best for people over 60, when the risk for early dementia starts to steeply rise. The test can be applied in a matter of minutes and is completely non-invasive: no needles, chemicals, or radiation exposure. After the test, the client is told that their results show no cognitive impairment, or, if this is not the case, they are advised to seek further diagnostic tests with their physician.

PACT Care (The Netherlands)

PACT Care offers a data exchange platform that allows healthcare organizations to reduce the costs of aggregating real-world patient generated data from remote sources (e.g. connected devices, sensors and electronic surveys) while ensuring its untampered data provenance. Their unique differentiation: - no intermediaries (aka Trusted Third Parties between “data source” and “data consumption” (faster and cheaper data exchange) - Patient centric - patients are always in control over their data (consent management and log of access) here).

mediTective (Israel)

mediTective was formed to develop solutions for the medical world based on three complementing technologies. Image Analysis, Deep Learning and Artificial Intelligence. Their flagship product "Sherlock" (currently in clinical trials) is a platform that helps physicians automatically detect polyps during Colonoscopies.

Respo Gadgets (Turkey)

Respo Gadgets develops the most comfortable oral appliance to be used in mild to moderate level obstructive sleep apnea and snoring treatment. The prevalence of sleep apnea impacts more than 936 million people worldwide. The current treatment options such as CPAP devices and mandibular advancement splints are not preferred by the patients due to side effects and discomfort. Our mvp Dormio, minimizes user disturbances and side-effects, maximizes patient comfort while efficiently treating the syndrome. It is CE marked and more than 2200 units are already sold in 7 countries by doubling the retention rate. 

RiboPro (The Netherlands)

RiboPro (a spin-off of Mercurna) is a service provider, producing high-quality, high-potency RNA products, which are used as powerful research tools and therapeutics. RiboPro offers both off-the-shelf and custom RNA products at competitive rates and turn-around times, effectively removing all barriers to successful use of RNA in the research and development of their customers.

About Rockstart

Rockstart is an early stage investor that empowers purpose-driven founders across three domains: Energy, AgriFood, and Emerging Technologies.

Rockstart invests in early-stage startups from each of the three funds and provides access to capital, market, and expertise by connecting founders with co-investors, mentors, partners, corporates, and the wider Rockstart network.

Rockstart has invested in more than 350 startups and its alumni value to date is more than €1.6bn. Rockstart is an international team of 45+ professionals dedicated to empowering purpose-driven founders to become scalable and drive positive change on a global scale. Rockstart has notable exits such asWercker,, Hubs.Com, Bouw7, iClinic, and s and Brincr. The company has offices in Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Bogota.

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