Anyone visiting REHACARE on site will notice numerous small stands in addition to the larger stands of many established companies. Here you can often find new start-ups that want to expand the assistive technology sector with a fresh idea.
Start-ups often have a hard time at the beginning. However, various companies offer help.
Some of these companies are founded by people who themselves have a disability and have developed a more suitable aid that they would now like to present to the general public. Others have people in their environment who prompted them to develop the product.
However an idea has come about - with a start-up (you can find exciting statistics on this topic on the statista site), you have the opportunity to establish yourself on the market. Cooperation with larger companies is often helpful and desirable - from both sides. HASOMED GmbH from Magdeburg (Germany), for example, works closely with the neighboring Health+IT Campus (HIT-CAMPUS). They help bring together start-ups and established companies in the healthcare industry to develop new innovative strategies and solutions.
HASOMED CEO Matthias Weber sees clear advantages in the cooperation: "By promoting and supporting young companies, we have the opportunity to gain access to innovations outside our own research and development department. This gives us the opportunity to contribute our market experience, our development know-how and our experience with our customers to the new companies. The start-ups can learn from our mistakes/experiences and thus save a lot of time and money. But also our employees benefit from the cooperation, because they get new impulses and inspirations through the collaboration with the start-ups."
Grounds of the Health+IT Campus and the company HASOMED GmbH in Magdeburg (Germany).
At the Health+IT Campus, a special program has been developed to link start-ups with established companies. Mathias Schulz, Managing Director of HIT-CAMPUS, elaborates, "We call this form of cooperation Corporate Venture. Established companies invest time, money and knowledge in the young companies. Like a kind of mentor or business angel. To this end, the Health+IT Campus has launched an accelerator program. Participating start-ups are brought together with established companies from the respective market segment. The advantages for both sides are manifold: joint product innovations, know-how exchange, personnel exchange, mutual use of technologies. Everything helps the start-ups, they don't feel alone".
There are many opportunities to make contacts at the fair.
Using the trade fair as a contact exchange
The start-ups do not have to feel alone at REHACARE. Here, the small companies find interested parties for their products, both consumers and companies. Like Scewo AG, which exhibited at the trade fair in 2019 and has since received an aid number for its product, the Scewo Bro. The same applies to munevo GmbH, which exhibited at REHACARE for the first time in 2018. They, too, have received the all-important aid number, which makes it easier to bill health insurance companies for the product.
Inputs can also be obtained in the various REHACARE forums (Forum language: German): In the PRODUCTS & NEWS @REHACARE specialist forum, exhibitors offer an insight into their product portfolio and present innovations in short presentations. At TREFFPUNKT REHACARE (English: Meeting place REHACARE), the name says it all. Each year, a main topic is presented here and visitors and exhibitors are invited to exchange ideas. Start-ups can also be found here. This exchange is particularly useful for young companies in the healthcare sector, as the market has become difficult due to the new Medical Device Regulation (MDR), which will apply in full from May this year. Weber also emphasizes this: "Entering the healthcare markets has certainly not become easier due to the MDR/IVDR that is now in force. Since not only have the requirements increased, but the number of certification bodies has also decreased, the documentation effort has increased and the processing times are unusually prolonged. This time, when nothing is happening, still costs money for personnel and so on. Startups don't have that money, nor are investors happy to help finance this waiting time." For this reason, solutions must always be found individually for each start-up. Nevertheless, one should not be deterred, because many aids have their beginning with a good idea.
If you want to learn more about start-ups at REHACARE.com, it's worth taking a look at these articles!