Introducing Signant Health [Formerly CRF Bracket] and the Industry’s Most Comprehensive Patient-Centric Suite for Clinical Research (Press Release)

New brand focused on essential, patient-centered technology to simplify global drug development


Jun 10, 2019, 09:00 ET


LONDON and PHILADELPHIA, June 10, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — CRF Bracket, formed by the 2018 merger of CRF Health and Bracket, today launched as Signant Health ( Uniting eCOA, eConsent, Patient Engagement, IRT, Clinical Supplies and Endpoint Quality into the industry’s most comprehensive patient-centric suite, Signant makes it easier to participate in – and sites and study teams to run – clinical trials. This intense focus on the patient experience, deep therapeutic area expertise and global operational scale enable sponsors and CROs to extend the reach of drug development, expand patient opportunities and improve data quality.

“The best technology in clinical research succeeds in the background,” said Mike Nolte, CEO of Signant Health. “We work to be expert, with proven solutions and scientific support that simplify research for patients, sponsors and CROs. I’m humbled to be a part of our customers’ important work, proud of the Signant Health team and excited to continue to innovate along every step of the patient journey.”

Signant Health combines a comprehensive, united suite of proven technologies with expert developers, project managers, data analysts, scientists and clinicians. That team is dedicated to help customers bring life-changing therapies to our families and communities around the world.

“The new Signant brand reflects our desire to help separate signal from noise at the intersection of science and technology and to never forget that our customers’ significant work matters locally and globally,” added Nolte. “In 2018, CRF Health and Bracket brought together industry-leading technology and analytics solutions, renowned executive and scientific leaders, and 20 years of experience delivering exemplary service to life science companies worldwide. The birth of Signant Health marks the next phase in our journey and unlocks extraordinary opportunities to improve the patient’s journey as well.”

As part of the name change, the company will launch its new identity online from 10 June 2019. The Signant Health experience will be fully rolled out publicly at DIA’s Global Annual Meeting (DIA 2019).

To learn more about Signant Health’s solutions for eCOA, eConsent, Patient Engagement, IRT, Clinical Supply Management, and Endpoint Quality scientific and data support services, visit

About Signant Health

The best technology succeeds in the background. Signant Health provides solutions that simplify every step of the patient journey to make it easier for people to participate in, and for sites and study teams to run, clinical trials. Signant unites eCOA, eConsent, Patient Engagement, IRT, Clinical Supplies and Endpoint Quality into the industry’s most comprehensive patient-centric suite – an evolution built on more than 20 years of proven clinical research technology. Our intense focus on the patient experience, deep therapeutic area expertise and global operational scale enable hundreds of sponsors and CROs (including all Top 20 pharma) to extend the reach of drug development, expand patient opportunities and improve data quality – helping them bring life-changing therapies to our families and communities around the world. Take a significant step toward patient-centricity at

CRF Health and Bracket are now Signant Health.



Jun 10, 2019, 09:00 ET


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PhillyTech People News 6/20

USA Technologies, Inc. Appoints Matthew W. McConnell as Chief Operating Officer via @YahooFinanceJune 21, 2019

✨Some personal news⚡️

SO excited to share I am joining the @FirstRound team!!! 🎉

As a native Bay Arean, I’ve been a fan for years. 🥰 I’ll be working on special projects that focus on how we activate investors, founders, and operators in a thoughtful + highly impactful way.— Girl Alex (@grlalx) May 13, 2019

SocketLabs Names New Chief Revenue Officer to Drive Next Wave of Growth in Email Delivery Market | Business Wire 21, 2019

Jefferson College of Population Health names first entrepreneur-in-residence via @PHLBizJournal
June 13, 2019

Comcast Gatekeeper Gaiski Exiting #nichepubs #feedly
June 13, 2019

Walmart eliminates Jet president role as it further integrates e-commerce business 21, 2019

Walmart appoints new head for its startup incubator Store No. 8 21, 2019

Ben Franklin NEP Promotes Wayne Barz to Chief Investment Officer (Press Release) 

Vawdrey takes helm as CDIO at Geisinger Health System— Tom Paine (@phillytechnews) June 21, 2019

SDI Welcomes Kelley Ferguson to Business Development Team via @PRWeb— Tom Paine (@phillytechnews) June 22, 2019

Clinical Trial data leader Medidata, with Conshy office, to be acquired by Dassault for $5.8 billion

It really flies

Tom Paine

Medidata, which calls itself a Unified Life Science Platform, agreed yesterday to be acquired by French technology company Dassault for $5.8 billion in cash, 2% less than its closing price the preceding Friday.

New York-based Medidata, founded in 1999 and specializing in data and processes related to clinical trials, has an office in Conshohocken dating from an acquisition with some 100 employees, per LinkedIn. There is stepped up competition as larger participants enter the market. Medidata revenue increased 17% last year to $635.7 million while it reported net income of $51.9 million.

Other larger entrants in the market include Oracle, Veeva Systems, CRF Bracket (just renamed Signant Health), BioClinica, and IQVIA , the result of the merger between IMS Health and Quintiles.

Dassault had revenue of $3.5 billion euros in 2018. It acquired Quintiq, a supply chain software provider based in Radnor and the Netherlands, for $336 milion in 2014. Rumors about Dassault’s interest in Medidata date back to at least April.


Veeva Soars on Earnings Release

Veeva Soars on Earnings Release

Tom Paine

  California-based Veeva Systems (NYSE: VEEV), the Life Sciences Cloud company with east coast operations based in Radnor, announced 1st quarter 2020 results on May 29 . it was a blowout quarter in which revenue reached a billion dollar annual run rate at $245 million, up 25% year over year. First quarter operating income was $71.2 million, compared to $44.0 million one year ago, an increase of 62% year-over-year. Net Income grew 66% year-over-year.

Veeva also has offices in Fort Washington and Princeton. 

Veeva highlighted the continued success of ongoing product development, including the release of Veeva Andi, an AI application that delivers
insights and suggestions from within Veeva CRM, and the adoption of its relatively new Veeva Vault CDMS offering by a Top Twenty Pharma. Also, Veeva recently introduced Veeva Claims, for non-pharma clients to help them with end-to-end claims management.

Veeva raised its revenue guidance for FY2020 to revenues between $1,045 and $1,050 million, a $20 million upward adjustment. Its shares broke through to a new high after the earnings release and now trade at $162.20, giving Veeva a market value of just under $24 billion, and a remarkable price to sales (not price to earnings) ratio of 24.

The intense pressure resulting from being a “momentum stock” now plagues Veeva, a nice problem to have. Investor expectations become more and more demanding, and even a slight negative surprise could cause a dramatic decline in the share price

Ben Franklin NEP Promotes Wayne Barz to Chief Investment Officer (Press Release)

Ben Franklin Promotes Wayne Barz to Chief Investment Officer

The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania (BFTP/NEP) has announced the promotion of Wayne K. Barz to Chief Investment Officer. Barz has served as Ben Franklin’s Manager of Entrepreneurial Services since 2000, having overseen the expansion of Ben Franklin’s incubator facilities from 18,000 square feet to 129,000 square feet.

In his new role as Chief Investment Officer, Barz will direct Ben Franklin’s Enterprise Development group, which has the primary responsibility for identifying early-stage firm and established manufacturer client investment and support opportunities, and managing relationships with each client. The group also executes on Ben Franklin’s mission to continue improving the region’s business-technology infrastructure by catalyzing business incubation, university and college centers of excellence, and angel investor networks, among other initiatives.

The Enterprise Development group is comprised of four regional managers and an incubator manager in BFTP/NEP’s 21-county service area. Barz will also lead the Solutions Network, which has responsibility for identifying, qualifying, and directing Ben Franklin’s business and technical advisors, and third-party prospective client reviewers.

In his previous position, Barz managed Ben Franklin TechVentures, which was selected by the International Business Innovation Association as Incubator of the Year in both 2001 and 2012. In that position, he provided direct strategic business development assistance to more than 150 firms, facilitated investor introductions, developed new business opportunities, and helped recruit outside resources and management team members.

Barz assisted clients in raising $175 million in follow-on investment and in generating $28 million in 2018 revenues. He serves as a board observer at six BFTP/NEP client companies. As the leader of the Ben Franklin Business Technology Incubator Network, Barz provided mentoring and developmental assistance to 12 other incubators in northeastern Pennsylvania. This network is among the largest incubator networks in the U.S.

Before coming to Ben Franklin, Barz was the Director of Industrial Development for the Allentown Economic Development Corporation (AEDC). He managed the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center small business incubator and the Allentown Enterprise Zone program. Prior to that, he worked at the Urban Research and Development Corporation, at which he directed many of its economic development projects.

Barz earned an MBA, Management of Technology, and a BS, Economics, both from Lehigh University. He completed a Lehigh University vSeries Certificate in Entrepreneurship and the Mergers and Acquisitions course of the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts.

Barz has served on myriad economic development, technology infrastructure, and community boards over three decades. Currently he is the board president and a finance committee member of the Community Action Committee of the Lehigh Valley; a board member and past President of the Rising Tide Community Loan Fund; and a board member for the City of Allentown Enterprise Zone Committee. He was the chairperson of the Science and Technology Committee of Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation and a member of the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center Advisory Committee.

He earned the Lehigh University MBA Alumni Award for Entrepreneurship in 2012.

Barz is a frequent speaker at numerous events, including presentations for the International Business Innovation Association, the Pennsylvania Economic Development Association, the Creating Pennsylvania’s Future Summit, the Lehigh Valley Engineering Council, the Iacocca Institute’s Global Village, and many others. He conceived, developed, and taught a course, Building the High-Tech Start-Up, at Lafayette College from 2010 through 2018.

About the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania

The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania (BFTP/NEP) creates and retains highly paid, sustainable jobs by investing in and linking companies with experts, universities, follow-on funding, and other resources to help them prosper through innovation. It is part of a four-center economic development initiative of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and is funded by the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority.

BFTP/NEP’s strategy encompasses three key areas:

1.     developing and growing early-stage technology-oriented companies;

2.     supporting established manufacturers as they creatively apply new technology to help them succeed globally by producing better, cheaper, and faster;

3.     promoting an innovative community-wide infrastructure that supports Pennsylvania’s business technology ecosystem.

Since beginning operations in 1983, BFTP/NEP has helped to create 18,536 new jobs for Pennsylvania workers and to retain 37,328 existing jobs, to start 520 new companies, and to develop 1,935 new products and processes. Since 2007, BFTP/NEP clients have generated nearly $1.6 billion in follow-on funding. ThePennsylvania Ben Franklin Technology Partners network has returned $3.90 to the state treasury for every $1.00 invested in the program.

BFTP/NEP owns, manages, and is headquartered in Ben Franklin TechVentures®, an award-winning business incubator/post-incubator facility on Lehigh University’s campus in Bethlehem. BFTP/NEP also owns and manages the Bloomsburg Regional Technology Center. Applying more than 35 years of experience and two international awards for excellence in business incubat

Top Philly startup InstaMed acquired by JP Morgan

Tom Paine

Philly-based InstaMed, which announced in February that it was selling itself, found its buyer last week: JP Morgan. PE Hub said the price was between $550 and $600 million. Company officials indicated last Fall that they expected 2018 revenue to be in the neighborhood of $58 million. So its basically 10x revenue.

InstaMed, which is a dedicated health payments platform for consumers, had raised $132.4 million going back to 2005, according to CrunchBase. Local investors included Osage Venture Partners, Ben Franklin, NJTC, and believe it or not Josh Kopelman from his personal fund. Instamed is heavy in Penn connections.

InstaMed processed $94 billion of transactions last year, the companies said. Within the $3.5 billion annual healthcare spend, consumers are paying an increasing share of it directly.

InstaMed’s target market has largely been self-insured, under-insured, and other consumers facing high deductibles.

Management stayed focused on building a reliable platform for accumulating volume in healthcare payments. Not too many bells and whistles.

“We’ve made significant investments in our wholesale payments business over the years and this acquisition will give us a unique advantage in one of the fastest growing sectors,” Takis Georgakopoulos, global head of the bank’s wholesale payments, said in a statement.

But beyond the accumulation of volume in payments, I think JPMorgan would do well to develop a deeper industry-specific healthcare strategy for InstaMed. This could include more information that help consumers see more options, understand tradofffs and better evaluate cost alternatives in choosing services.

This effort appears totally separate from Haven (a joint venture between JPMorgan, Amazon and Berkshire Hathaway that was announced in 2018), though that could always change.

Bill Marvin, co-founder and CEO of InstaMed, will continue in the same role under JPMorgan.

InstaMed’s 300 employees will continue to be housed at Philly headquarters and its Newport Beach CA cloud center.

InterDigital says it can still license 5g Tech to Huawei

Tom Paine

Wilmington-based InterDigital says it believes it can still license advanced 5g technology to China telecom giant Huawei, despite the Trump administration’s attempt to cut off technology sales to the company.

InterDigital (NASDAQ:IDCC) says export control laws do not cover patents, which are public records and therefore not confidential technology.

Huawei accounted for 14% of InterDigital’s $533 million in revenue in 2017.

First Round’s tally on Uber is in

Tom Paine

The Wall Street Journal published an article this week highlighting some of the biggest VC investment wins of recent time, choosing First Round Capital’s stake in Uber as a prime example.

The numbers it has for that are $500,000 invested in 2010, returning proceeds of $2.5 billion, or 5,000x its investment. I saw some slightly different figures in other publications.

Of course, these results came from the WSJ, not First Round. And I’m not sure they recognized that about 40% of First Round shares were sold last year as part of the Softbank offer, according to sources.

Planning for the capital gains on that profit must have been a bear.