Integrated Devices That Cross Sector Boundaries

Combination devices are becoming more common, melding devices and therapeutics together to increase the efficacy of treatment. Panelists will discuss the challenges that many of the companies developing these products face, including:

  • How to handle regulatory challenges for combination devices
  • What investors look for when considering combination devices
  • What to avoid when speaking to investors

Panelists will explore what they see as red flags when assessing potential portfolio companies, as well as the best ways to catch their interest.


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Rick Berenson, Director – Executive Board, Mass Medical Angels (Moderator)

Rick serves as Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Thermalin Diabetes LLC. Mr. Berenson has been building organizations for twenty-five years. He has been Chief Executive Officer or Chief Operating Officer of eleven companies and the Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of several more. He has been a member of the Executive Board of Mass Medical Angels. As Managing Director of Venzyme Catalyst, LLC, he has successfully launched and financed many life science organizations around important new technologies in complex markets. Mr. Berenson holds JD-MBA from Harvard Law and Business Schools in 1984 and is a graduate of Harvard College.

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Oliver Keown, Director, Intuitive Ventures, Intuitive Surgical

Oliver Keown, MD Director, Intuitive Ventures Oliver joined Intuitive Ventures in 2019 and leads investment efforts with a focus on identifying future leaders of minimally invasive care, including early stage startups across digital, medical device, therapeutic, and diagnostic domains. Prior to Intuitive Ventures, Oliver was a healthcare investor with GE Ventures, driving international-startup deal flow and supporting numerous portfolio companies operationally and at the board level. He also spent a number of years advising an array of UK, US, and global healthcare innovation projects across technology, government, commercial, and academic fields. He started his career as a junior doctor and policy advisor in the UK National Health Service and remains dedicated to bringing new technologies, diverse partnerships, and investment to address healthcare‘s biggest unmet needs. Oliver holds an MD and BSc in pharmacology from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. He is a widely published author in the fields of healthcare and surgical innovation, and is an advisory board member of the Newsom administration‘s California Initiative to Advance Precision Medicine.

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Aude Ouensanga, Partner, Alira Health Ventures

Aude advises start-ups and large global corporations in the U.S., EU, and Japan. Since joining Alira Health in 2012, Aude has managed over 100 corporate strategy, commercial due diligence, pre-commercial value assessments, and M&A projects in MedTech and Pharma. Previously, Aude was as an M&A analyst at BNP Paribas and a strategy analyst at Novartis Pharma. A registered U.S. investment banker with FINRA Series 79 and 63 certifications, Aude is also an investment manager at Alira Health Ventures.

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Omar Khalil, Partner, Santé Ventures

Omar Khalil rejoined Santé in 2020, concentrates on the biotechnology and medical technology spaces, and manages the Boston Office. Prior to that, he held senior leadership roles with Baxter International, Baxalta (now part of Takeda) and Kaléo, a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a novel drug delivery platform primarily focused in Allergy & Immunology. He has managed and led businesses ranging from early clinical development, commercial launch and scaling to more than $3 Billion in annual sales. He spent nearly five years at Santé as a Principal, investing Funds I and II. Earlier in his career, he worked at McKinsey & Company in the healthcare practice, where he served leading medical device and pharmaceutical companies. He received his MSE and BSE in Biomedical Engineering summa cum laude from the University of Michigan with a concentration in Tissue Engineering.