MENTAL & BEHAVIORAL HEALTH

Investing in Technologies that Help Manage Well-Being

With COVID having affected the lives of many across the globe, triggering feelings of fear, stress, uncertainty, and more, the importance of technologies that address mental & behavioral health disorders continues to be recognized by many. Despite the number of people affected by mental & behavioral disorders, this continues to be a stigmatized area and patients easily find themselves lacking the resources and support they need.

This panel will discuss the following topics and more:

  • Why is investing in mental & behavioral health so important?
  • Has COVID changed investors’ perspectives on mental & behavioral health in any way?
  • What are the biggest problems in the current mental & behavioral health landscape (i.e. collecting and consolidating patient data, access to care, identifying appropriate interventions for each disease, etc.)
  • How can the industry continue to reduce the stigma associated with mental & behavioral disorders?

Panelists will highlight the representation of mental & behavioral health within the industry through various investor types, including hospital and healthcare systems. Panelists will discuss how to meet the challenges of raising financing for a highly stigmatized—though prevalent—area and advise startups on how to make the investment case for their novel technology. Panelists will explore what trends in mental & behavioral health are of top interest, its future outlook, and global impact.

Panelists:

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Robert Garber, Partner, 7wire Ventures (Moderator)

Robert is currently a Partner at 7wireVentures, where he focuses on investments in digital healthcare and technology-enabled services that empower consumers to be better stewards of their health in today’s changing healthcare ecosystem.

Robert has over 25 years of experience investing in, advising, and operating early-stage healthcare and technology companies and has co-managed three venture funds with $200+ AUM. Before joining 7wireVentures, Robert served as Managing Director of Stratus Ventures and KB Partners where he led investments in early-stage healthcare and technology companies.

Previously, Robert served as Director of Corporate Development for FastWeb.com, a Web-based direct marketing company now owned by Monster, Inc. (Nasdaq: MNST). He joined FastWEB.com after serving as Director of Application Consulting for TechLaw Automation Partners, a technology consultancy focused exclusively on the legal industry. Robert was recruited to TechLaw Automation Partners from Gnossos Software, a software developer of applications for the public affairs, academic, and non-profit markets, where he was a key member of the development team.

Robert received a Master of Business Administration degree from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

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Payal Divakaran, Partner, .406 Ventures

Payal is a Partner at .406 Ventures, where she co-leads the digital health investing practice. .406 Ventures is a Boston-based venture capital firm with ~$1B under management. The firm invests in enterprise-oriented startups in sectors including digital health, cybersecurity, and data & cloud. Payal’s portfolio includes AristaMD, Axial Healthcare, Better Life Partners, Equip, Heartbeat Health, Nomad Health, Redox, WelbeHealth, Wellist, and Virtudent.

Payal joined .406 after her time at Harvard Business School, where she co-founded a company called SpotRocket to help students discover high potential startups to work for. Prior to her entrepreneurial stint and also while in business school, Payal spent time in Corporate Development at Eventbrite.

Prior to HBS, Payal was an Associate at Spectrum Equity, a technology growth equity investor in Boston. She sourced and executed on deals in the software, information services, data/analytics, security, and internet spaces. Payal started her career pursuing technology investment banking at J.P. Morgan in NYC.

Payal received her MBA, with Distinction, from Harvard Business School and her BS in Electrical Engineering and minor in Management from MIT. She is a Boston native, and she and her husband, who is a physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and two kids live in Brookline.

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Pankaj Jethwani, Executive Vice President, W Health Ventures

Over the last ten years, Dr. Jethwani has been involved in improving care delivery in several care settings in the US and India as a physician leader, operator, management consultant, and investor.

Dr. Jethwani started his career as a Primary Care Physician in Mumbai, India. Through this experience, he witnessed first-hand the gaps in health care delivery in both the public and private sectors. Motivated to bring about reform in this system, he joined The Boston Consulting Group in India where he helped shape BCG’s work with Government agencies to improve delivery of healthcare at scale. He later co-founded The Breakfast Revolution (TBR), a social enterprise fighting the malnutrition epidemic in India. TBR has served 220,000+ children over 20 million fortified meals.

More recently, Pankaj worked at Iora Health, a Boston-based innovative primary care company that serves seniors on Medicare. This experience helped shape his perspective on building and scaling a technology-enabled value-based care organization, taking global risk, and creating a delightful model of care for patients and providers. At W Health Ventures, Dr. Jethwani leads investments in disruptive technology-enabled healthcare services companies in the US and India.

Pankaj holds an MBBS (MD-equivalent) degree from MUHS (India) and received an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

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Steve Lebowitz, Senior Managing Director, HCN Ventures

Steve was part of the initial team that helped launch HCN Ventures in 2020 and has been responsible for sourcing opportunities as well as setting the strategic direction of the platform. He joined Health Care Navigator (“HCN”) in 2016 as Senior Managing Director with responsibilities for sourcing and leading investment opportunities in their core healthcare business as well as participate in the overall strategic direction of HCN portfolio companies. Prior to joining HCN, Mr. Lebowitz was a Managing Director with Barrow Street Capital LLC a sponsor of opportunistic real estate private equity funds. Mr. Lebowitz was responsible for acquisitions and asset management of firm’s complex opportunistic investments with a capitalization in excess of $2.5 billion. Prior to Barrow Street, Mr. Lebowitz served as a senior accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He earned a B.S. in Accounting from Binghamton University.