Top 50 Emerging Leaders 2021 continued (in alphabetical order by CVC unit): Oliver Keown, director, Intuitive Ventures
Oliver Keown is the director of Intuitive Ventures, the $100m corporate venture capital (CVC) fund launched in October 2020 by US-headquartered surgical robotics technology provider Intuitive to invest in minimally invasive healthcare technology developers.
Keown told Global Corporate Venturing that he saw a widespread acceleration in the adoption of digital technologies across healthcare in 2020, which was driven by the unprecedented need to manage limited resources while ensuring access to quality care.
Concerning 2021’s outlook, Keown said: “With digital proliferation in the covid-era, we finally have the infrastructure and accessibility to data to drive AI (artificial intelligence)-based clinical decision support and personalised patient care pathways across surgery and medicine.”
Intuitive Ventures will target independent developers of digital health tools, medical devices, focal therapeutics and precision diagnostic technologies. It is overseen by president Julian Nikolchev, who joined Intuitive in 2019 as senior vice-president of corporate development and strategy.
The vehicle was co-founded by Keown, who was hired by the company in August 2019 to lead its development, after three years as a senior associate at corporate venturing unit GE Ventures, the CVC arm of industrial and power technology provider General Electric, focusing on healthcare investments.
Keown said at the time of the unit’s launch: “We are value-add investors who leverage access to Intuitive’s unique industry expertise and customer connections. Our nimble structure and alignment with the startups we will back empower us to invest early and support our portfolio companies as they pioneer markets.”
Nikolchev added: “The future of minimally invasive care spans the patient journey from early diagnosis to treatment and beyond. Intuitive Ventures is investing in cutting-edge innovation across the continuum of care to bring the future forward.”
Intuitive Ventures’ already has several deals under its belt, including its first disclosed investment in KēlaHealth, a US-based operator of AI-powered surgical intelligence solutions.