Google Inc (NASDAQ GOOG) has made history with its Internet innovation – but now it’s about to leave the same mark on another industry. GOOG knows the healthcare sector is one of the fastest-growing markets today. Healthcare is a $2.8 trillion-a-year industry in the United States alone.
Healthcare spending currently accounts for 18% of the U.S. economy. It’s expected to grow to 20% – or $5 trillion – by 2022 and create 3.5 million new jobs through 2020. On a global scale, Freedonia group researchers estimate the value of the health industry at $10.8 trillion a year by 2017.
Venture capital firms see the potential. In just the first six months of 2014, VC funding for healthcare tech firms shot up 176% to a record $2.3 billion, according to a survey by seed funding firm Rock Health. That compares to the $2 billion invested in all of 2013.
It’s no wonder Google sees opportunity here. And the search engine king’s Big Data capabilities mean it has a lot to offer.
Google Inc (NASDAQ GOOG) News: HealthCare Industry
Google’s investment arm, Google Ventures, invests about $1.5 billion in promising startups. One of its main focuses is on health and Big Data. Ventures currently has 13 American life science and health companies in its portfolio, plus other healthcare-related investments in seed, enterprise, and data startups. In July, Ventures launched a $100 million fund to invest in promising European startups.
“My job is kind of a judge at a science fair,” Google Ventures managing partner Bill Maris said to Re/code in June. “What we try to put into our practice is ‘invest in what we know,’ which is where healthcare meets technology. In some sense, almost all companies these days need to be big data companies.”
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Google Inc Financial News (NASDAQ GOOG)
In May, Google Ventures led a $130 million round of funding in Flatiron Health. According toThe Wall Street Journal, the round was the fourth-largest investment Google Ventures has made to date and its largest in medical software.
Flatiron uses Big Data analytics to gather up and track cancer treatment records. This gives doctors a clearer picture of cancer patient care. Currently, 500 to 1,000 oncologists use the startup’s data platform.
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