Natalie J. Egan, Founder and CEO of Translator

Natalie J. Egan (she / her / hers) is an openly transgender B2B software entrepreneur. As CEO and founder of Translator, she is on a mission to scale empathy and equality through technology. Natalie has over 20 years of experience driving digital change, developing high performing teams, building complex products, and selling enterprise solutions. Prior to founding Translator in 2016 – and prior to her transition – Natalie was CEO and founder of PeopleLinx, a venture capital backed social selling technology solution that was recently acquired by a leading sales acceleration company. In addition to her entrepreneurial pursuits, Natalie has also worked in leadership positions at LinkedIn, Autonomy, and Ecolab. Based in New York City, she spends her free time with her three children or mentoring female entrepreneurs and LGBTQ youth. Natalie is a graduate of Cornell University and The Villanova School of Business and is currently writing her first book about her transition from male to female CEO and the business lessons learned along the way.

Email Marketing Isn’t Going Anywhere – How to Use It Well

posted by: MICHAEL TORRES, Graham Media Partners

Email marketing has been used for so many years that you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking it’s on its way to irrelevancy. The truth is, email marketing is not only still around, but remains a powerful marketing tool that is actually increasing in popularity.

In fact, according to Salesforce, it was the second-fastest growing B2C marketing tool from 2015 to 2017 (video claimed the top spot). That may seem surprising, but the stats from Salesforce’s survey show that email consistently outperforms other digital platforms in return on investment and cost-effectiveness.

Click here to read more.

Staying Productive – Your Way

posted by: MICHAEL TORRES, Graham Media Partners

How many articles have you read on productivity yet you still seem to procrastinate the day away? That’s probably because the research on one site and must-dos on another aren’t what will keep your unique mind on task.

If you walked into the GMP office, you’d see a group of people busily working away. But upon closer observation, you’d find that we each have distinctive, and sometimes odd, ways of sustaining that diligence. Because we are such a nice and helpful group of people, we decided to share a few of those personal tactics with you.

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Activate Leads $80 Million Series D Growth Equity Round into Stem, Inc.

Activate Capital is pleased to announce our recent investment into Stem, Inc. Headquartered in Millbrae, California, Stem is the global leader in artificial intelligence (AI)-powered energy storage. The Company’s mission is to build and operate the largest digitally connected energy network to help its customers optimize the value of their energy assets and facilitate participation in energy markets, yielding economic and societal benefits while decarbonizing the grid.

Click here to read the full article.

Think Company Names EVP Russ Starke As New CEO

New executive team also includes Bruce McMahon as COO and Phil Charron as EVP.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 1/29/18

PHILADELPHIA, PA: Think Company today named Russ Starke as its new Chief Executive Officer and announced additional leadership changes designed to help the Philadelphia-area experience design firm continue to grow and thrive as it launches into its second decade.

Russ was involved in early conversations that led to the creation of Think Company, and became the firm’s first employee shortly after Carl White and Brian McIntire founded the company in 2007. Throughout the 10 years since then, Russ has worked alongside Carl and Brian to lead and shape the firm. He most recently served as Think Company’s Executive Vice President, providing organizational leadership and strategic oversight of delivery, marketing, operations, and business development.

Click here to read the full press release.

Alison Bush Delgado joins SeventySix Capital as Managing Director, Strategic Development

SeventySix Capital, a venture capital firm that invests in game-changing consumer tech companies in the sports, health and retail industries, announced Alison Bush Delgado as their new Managing Director, Strategic Development. This hire comes on the heels of several recent announcements from SeventySix Capital including the initial close of its latest venture capital fund, an esports investment in N3rd Street Gamers, and World Series Champion, Ryan Howard, joining the company as a Partner.

“We are excited to have Alison on our team,” said Wayne Kimmel, Managing Partner at SeventySix Capital. “She has 27 years of experience in developing and executing strategies for the growth of some of the largest and most well respected firms in the asset management industry. Alison will be responsible for our global fundraising strategy and investor relations, and will work with me to accelerate and expand our fundraising efforts for our current fund.”

Click here to read the full press release.

New Member (Partner) Named at GMS Surgent CPAs & Advisors

January 30, 2018 – GMS Surgent CPAs & Advisors is pleased to announce that Brian P. Pugliese, MT, CPA has been admitted to the LLC as a Member (Partner) on January 1, 2018. A graduate of LaSalle University, Brian has been with the firm for the past thirteen years, with a specialty in tax planning and compliance for both business and individual clients.

“Brian Pugliese has developed into a true leader and continues to bring a depth of experience to our firm,” said Brian Gallagher, managing member of GMS Surgent CPAs & Advisors. “As a strategic tax planner, he is a tremendous asset to our clients. We are glad to have him on board.”

Click here to read the full press release.

Cagent Vascular Presents Positive Results from the PRELUDE Study at LINC 2018

WAYNE, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Cagent Vascular, a developer of next generation technology for vessel dilatation in cardiovascular interventions announces positive results from the First-in-Human PRELUDE Study. Dr. Andrew Holden (Auckland, New Zealand), Principal Investigator, presented 30-day and preliminary 6-month results using the FDA 510(k) cleared Serranator® Alto PTA Serration Balloon Catheter at the Leipzig Interventional Course last week.

The PRELUDE Study is a prospective, single-arm, multicenter feasibility study designed to show safety and efficacy of the Serranator® device used in critical lesions in the superficial femoral artery (SFA) and/or popliteal arteries. The study enrolled 25 subjects at centers in New Zealand and Europe.

“The fascinating part of the trial is that although we had patients, by definition, who were excluded with severe calcification, there was a significant core lab adjudicated group of persons who had lesions with moderate to severe calcification. We could achieve luminal gain to nominal using very low pressures in that subgroup which tells us that this is something quite different from plain balloon angioplasty. Not only being able to dilate these vessels to nominal, which is an achievement on its own, but to do it without a significant incidence of dissection is an achievement. Although the numbers are small this is a really encouraging sign that the serration mechanism of action is a very different way of treating the artery,” said Dr. Holden.

Click here to read the full press release.

Legislative Updates for the Medtech Community

Congressional Outlook: The latest Continuing Resolution funding the government is set to expire at the end of the week. The House is expected to take up a new CR early in the week, likely funding the government until March 22. As of now, the expectation is that the Senate will pass the House CR once it is received, although negotiations around budget caps, immigration, tax extenders and other policies continue.  If a deal on caps and other items comes together, the likely scenario for passage of such a deal would be for the Senate to generate the legislation and send it to the House. Even in the case that a broader deal on caps and other items is reached, Congress would still have to pass a separate omnibus spending bill using the new caps numbers to fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year, and any such omni would be several weeks away. We will keep you posted on any developments.

Device Tax: AdvaMed’s activities this week have focused on limited “thank you” activities for our congressional champions and leadership for the recent two year suspension. We are running a series of digital ads in select states and districts through at least February 8. These ads are running in California, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin. Please refer to Riley’s note from yesterday for further details on the ads and related activities. AdvaMed also continues to explore opportunities for further action on the tax this year, including in connection with tax extenders legislation or the possibility of moving stand-alone legislation. We are also regrouping with our association partners to discuss next steps and explore broadening our base of champions. Another element of our advocacy for this year is framing how we discuss the value of the suspension as an important step, but not equivalent to long-term relief. We’ve spoken with several of you already about your company’s budget cycle, how you will plan for the device tax in the future, and the financial impact of short- versus long-term relief. Please share any examples that you can provide of projects, budgeting, or investments that you are able or unable to pursue given the short-term nature of the device tax relief with Angie Comte (acomte@advamed.org). We are happy to collect these examples on an ongoing basis as decisions are made. If you have any questions, please contact Riley at rswinehart@advamed.org.

Diagnostics Regulatory Reform: This week, AdvaMed met with staff for Senators Hatch and Bennet staff to discuss their progress on a diagnostics regulatory reform proposal. As with the House, the Senate offices have not yet advanced any proposal as they await FDA comments on the draft proposal from Reps. Buschon and DeGette. Senate staff indicated that this is a priority issue for both offices, and that while they are in the very early stages of meeting with stakeholders, they believe they can advance legislation this year. AdvaMed will stay in close contact with staff as this process evolves. To that end, we will discuss this feedback and other priority items on February 13th during a Dx Washington Representatives strategy meeting. If you have any questions, please contact Duane at dwright@advamed.org.

Breakthrough Pathway: We continue to anticipate near-term introduction of legislation in the House reflecting the Breakthrough Pathway payment proposal by Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jackie Walorski (R-IN), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) and Terri Sewell (D-AL).

VA Procurement: Riley held a call of our working group to review current work on legislation to create a new clinical program office for device procurement at the VA, and a Hill letter on continued industry issues with purchase order backlogs. We have finalized both a draft letter on the backlog issue and a concept paper on the program office, and AdvaMed will coordinate with member companies on outreach to our Hill leaders on this issue, starting with Reps. Peters (D-CA) and Banks (R-IN).

Third Party Servicing: The Hill letter to FDA regarding the pending report on third party servicing of medical technologies has been finalized, led by Reps. Costello (R-PA) and Peters (D-CA), with a total of 18 signatories (9 Republicans and 9 Democrats). Please see attached. In addition, AdvaMed will host a briefing for our patient group alliance partners on the topic on Tuesday.

Opioids: The Senate Finance Committee is requesting input from health care industry groups on potential policy changes to Medicare and Medicaid as part of efforts to address the opioid crisis. In their letter, bipartisan committee leadership asks for comments on whether program incentives can be used to promote pain management that minimizes the risk of becoming addicted to opioids. They also ask for recommendations that could expand access to treatment and prevention. AdvaMed’s payment and regulatory work groups continue to try to generate legislative proposals relevant to this issue, but so far we have not seen a robust response. If you have any concepts to share, please follow up with Elizabeth at esharp@advamed.org. Also, we have begun planning for a March Hill showcase to demonstrate technologies that are relevant to the opioids crisis. We will follow up with additional details.

Right to Try: In his State of the Union address, the President called for congressional action on right to try legislation. The Senate moved related legislation last year, and included a provision exempting medical devices, as requested by AdvaMed. The House Energy & Commerce Committee is working behind the scenes to prepare their own proposal, which we may see in the coming weeks. We will pursue a similar exemption in the House, and are also in touch with FDA to share our concerns.

SMTA Fly In: The 2018 State MedTech Alliance Fly-In will take place on February 27-28. We expect attendees from state associations from across the country, and will host a welcome reception the evening of February 27.  We will be reaching out directly to several of you to determine your interest in participating alongside your state associations in these visits.