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IFISE - Workpackage 6 Italian Start-ups and potential entrepreneurs interviewing Electromedical industry

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Title: IFISE - Workpackage 6 Italian Start-ups and potential entrepreneurs interviewing Electromedical industry


1
IFISE - Workpackage 6Italian Start-ups and
potential entrepreneurs interviewingElectromedica
l industry
Pavia,14 October 2001
2
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 1
ANIE (Italian Federation of Electrochnical and
Electronic Industries) counts some 700 companies.
The companies belonging to the electromedical
branch represented by ANIE are some 40 and the
total employees are some 2000.
3
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 2
  • Industry counts a few large companies and
    numerous very small companies.
  • The companies can be classified in
  • Companies producing/distributing hospital
    equipment
  • Companies providing technological services
  • Companies producing small electromedical devices
  • ANIE represents approximately 80 of the first
    two categories, while the companies producing
    small electromedical devices do not have an
    industry organisation, and official figures do
    not exist.
  • Altogether ANIE represents approximately 70 of
    the Italian electromedical industry.

4
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 3
Companies producing/distributing hospital
equipment
Some 30 companies. The main actors are
represented by global companies such as Philips,
Siemens, General Electrics, Agilent, Toshiba. In
Italy they only have a marketing/distribution
branch. No RD department. Most Italian companies
only distribute products. A few of them have also
production plants Esaote, Gilardoni, General
Medical Merate, Elettronica Trentina, Imetec.
5
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 4
Companies producing/distributing hospital
equipment
  • 80 of the demand comes from the public sector or
    private clinics operating within the National
    Health Service (ANIE/Assobiomedica estimations).
  • This particular area of industry has very high
    barriers to entry
  • 260 days average payment time
  • High production costs (expensive equipment and
    long product development cycle)
  • Public procurement rules
  • Furthermore the general trend is that National
    Health System cut its budget. Even if this cost
    containment policy probably doesnt have a direct
    effect on expenditures related to electromedical
    equipment, it is perceived as discouraging
    investments in innovation.

6
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 5
Companies producing/distributing hospital
equipment

Source Assobiomedica 2000
7
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry
6Companies providing technological services
This area mainly consists in companies providing
maintenance services and consulting for
submitting the request of approval to the
European authority. This area is not involved in
production or RD activities.
8
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 7
The electromedical devices are classified
according to the risk they can engender to the
patients and the personnel in case of
malfunctions. Lower the risk, easier and cheaper
it is to obtain the authorisation to produce and
distribute a particular device. Potential
entrepreneurship emerge in niches that require
few tests and trials (sometimes not at all).
9
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry 8
Companies producing small electromedical devices
Some 70 companies (ANIE estimations, no official
data). Most of these companies are
micro-enterprises/SMEs working as subcontractors
for large enterprises (mainly assemblers) or
producing/customising well-known products for
professionals. Barriers to entry are low,
innovation content is low (incremental
innovation) and competition is made mostly on
price and/or service. A small part of these
companies produces devices with higher innovation
content (usually spin-off from university
research centres).
10
Characteristics of the Electromedical Industry
9Summary
Foreign multinational companies do not have RD
departments in their Italian subsidiaries. Italian
companies active in the hospital equipment
area are mostly involved in marketing and
distribution. Only a few of them have production
plants, but the characteristics of the branch
require huge financial strength. The companies
producing small electromedical devices are quite
numerous but very small. They are mostly
assemblers, innovation content is very low and
usually limited to the customisation of existing
products. Some high technology spin-off from the
academic world exist.
11
Geographical specialisation 1
Inventors per LLS
Patents applications per LLS
12
Geographical specialisation 2
  • Main areas in Italy where the electromedical
    companies members of ANIE (they represent 70 of
    the industry) are localised are
  • Milan (18/41),
  • Rome (5/41)
  • Bergamo (4/41)
  • The most active areas in RD activities seem to
    be Rome, Milan, Genova, Bologna and Pisa/Livorno.

13
Geographical specialisation 3
  • Evidence shows that High Technology start-ups are
    concentrated where active university centres or
    scientific parks are localised confirming the key
    role of institutions/technology transfer centres
  • Consorzio Politecnico Innovazione (Milan)
  • Scuola Superiore SantAnna di Pisa
  • Centro Pisa Ricerche
  • Università di Genova - Polo di Savona
  • Università di Bologna
  • Parco Scientifico e Tecnologico di Tor Vergata
    (Roma)
  • The case of Pisa is particularly interesting as
    no big electromedical company is localised there.

14
Potential entrepreneursMethodology 1
  • Long list creation
  • The original database of inventors did not reveal
    itself to be a good source of potential
    entrepreneurs.
  • Relevant innovation centres and technology
    transfer centres were contacted in the
    Bologna/Modena area
  • Osservatorio Biomedicale di Modena
  • ProMo
  • Consobiomed di Modena
  • Ervet/Aster
  • Università di Bologna.

15
Potential entrepreneursMethodology 2
  • Given the small number of suitable contacts in
    the Bologna/Modena area, the geographical area
    was enlarged. The following institutions were
    contacted in Northern Italy
  • Acceleratore dimpresa del Politecnico di Milano,
  • Centro Pisa Ricerche,
  • Scuola Superiore S. Anna di Pisa,
  • Università di Genova - Polo di Savona,.
  • Effective first connections were 40.
  • Short list creation
  • 10 persons could be considered potential
    entrepreneurs and have been interviewed.

16
Potential entrepreneursGeneral data
All the potential entrepreneurs are
engineers. The greatest part of them (8/10) is
from 30 to 40 years old, while 2 people are
50. The residence is not homogeneous Central and
Northern Italy. Most of them are university
researchers. Only 2 people work in RD
departments of high technology companies (IGEA
and ESAOTE). The professional experience is
25-30 years for the 2 people working in the
companies, and from 5 to 12 years for those
working for universities.
17
Potential entrepreneurs Characteristics of the
would be entrepreneurial venture
None of them have previous entrepreneurial
experiences and only 3 of them intend to create
their own activity, while the others were
discouraged by the practical difficulties. 7 of
them intend to provide products to other
companies/consumers, while the other 3 intend to
offer some services. Mostly, the idea is born
inside universities (only 2 cases refer to
companies).
18
Potential entrepreneurs Characteristics of the
would be entrepreneurial venture
Competitive advantages of the project identified
by the potential entrepreneurs
  • Service (7)
  • Personal contacts (4)
  • New need (3)
  • Price (3)
  • Sector knowledge (3)
  • Technical knowledge (3)
  • First mover (0)
  • Process innovation (0)

19
Potential entrepreneurs Characteristics of the
would be entrepreneurial venture
Technological verification In 4 cases, the
technological verification and the prototype have
already been created In the other cases, funds
necessity for the technological examination is
USD 50.000/150.000. Only 1 case required more
than USD 600.000. Time needed varies between 6
months and 1 year.
20
Potential entrepreneurs Characteristics of the
would be entrepreneurial venture
Money/time to build a prototype 4 entrepreneurs
out of 6 stated that they would need 6 months to
1 year and less than USD 300.000. The others
would need 1 - 2 years and USD 300.000 -
600.000 Money/time to get to the market Less
than USD 600.000 and 1-2 years
21
Potential entrepreneurs Financing
  • Support institutions/measures
  • Potential entrepreneurs usually know the
    existence of structures or measures aimed at
    financing and/or helping start-ups.
  • 4 of them have applied to public incubators,
    while 3 consulted Venture Capitalists.
  • Main perceived problems associated with applying
    to this kind of structures and measures are
  • Confidential information (Incubators (8/10) and
    VCs(4/10))
  • Bureaucracy (Incubators (6/10))

22
Potential entrepreneurs Financing
  • 8 potential entrepreneurs have already prepared a
    Business Plan and they considered raising money
    from
  • Business angels (5)
  • Strategic and commercial partners (5)
  • Venture Capital Funds (3)
  • Banks (2)
  • Family/friends (2)
  • All the potential entrepreneurs are willing to
    invest little own money. Only one person is
    disposed to cover 50 of the investment.

23
Potential entrepreneursFinancing 2
Hereafter is an average of marks associated to
the perceived difficulty of activities related to
the setting-up of a new firm are
  • Fund raising 4,2
  • Marketing 3,9
  • Management 3,7
  • Strategic plans 3,5
  • Development of contacts 2,9
  • Market trends 2,8
  • Consulting and legal aspects 2,5
  • Human resources 2,4
  • Intellectual property rights 2,3
  • Technical information 1,5

24
Potential entrepreneurs Personal characteristics
and perceived difficulties
Hereafter is an average of marks associated to
the perceived advantages and disadvantages
related to becoming an entrepreneur
  • Disadvantages
  • Less leisure time 3,1
  • Should leave an assured job 2,5
  • Would lose peacefulness 2,5
  • Legislation too harsh in case of failure 2,3
  • Should change residence 1,6
  • Advantages
  • Personal fulfilment 4,4
  • Higher reward 4,1
  • Higher flexibility 3,1

25
Start-ups
  • Start-ups interviewed are localised in
  • Pisa/Livorno 4 spin off from Scuola Superiore
    S. Anna di Pisa
  • Bologna 1 spin off from the University of
    Bologna
  • Florence 1 spin off Scuola Superiore S. Anna di
    Pisa
  • Milano 1 spin off Politecnico di Milano
  • They are all related to the telemedicine branch.
  • Telemedicine is defined as the use of
    telecommunications to provide medical information
    and services. It implies a simultaneous use of
    appropriately customised electromedical sets.

26
Start-ups
  • Main difficulties
  • Financing
  • Marketing and managerial matters
  • International contacts creation
  • Legal matters
  • Even if the telemedicine branch does not require
    huge RD investments USD 100.000 - 600.000 and it
    probably could seem more interesting for VCs,
    financing is still mentioned as the main problem.

27
CAST Consulting Via del Vecchio Politecnico,
3 20121 Milano Tel. 39 02 77796.200 Fax 39 02
796843 E-mail castint_at_castconsulting.com http//ww
w.castconsulting.com For further information
contact Francesco Pellizzari Tobia Fiorilli
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