Pharmaceutical companies seeking feedback from heart surgeons, or academics publishing an article who need medical insights can often have difficulties engaging with the right people.
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This is where Within3, an enterprisewide solution for life science collaboration and communication, comes in. The Lakewood, Ohio-based company has developed a SaaS virtual engagement tool that connects life science companies with physicians, nurses, payers and patients. Its intent is to foster meaningful discussions aimed at bringing drugs to market faster, publishing clinical studies, and gaining expert insights. It also takes into account industry and regulatory barriers on medical communication.
“We looked for places within life sciences where communication was difficult, time-consuming and redundant, and we created virtual collaboration tools so they could work on different problems,” Lance Hill, CEO of Within3, told Crunchbase News.
The company has now landed its first institutional backing; more than $100 million in growth funding led by Insight Partners, with participation from Silversmith Capital Partners. Previously, Within3 was angel investor-backed and bootstrapped, raising about $20 million between 2008 and 2012, Hill said.
“Our team is profoundly impressed by the unique value Within3 brings to the life sciences and health care industry, and their largely bootstrapped success to date is a clear reflection of their strong leadership team,” said Adam Berger, managing director for Insight Partners, via email. “Within3 is the premiere software available to researchers, manufacturers, regulators and health care professionals with nuanced solutions enabling large numbers of stakeholders to collaborate and communicate asynchronously, in a completely compliant and protected platform. Insight Partners is thrilled to bring our 25 years of software experience and operational excellence to partner with Within3 as they continue to scale.”
Within3 is already working with the top 20 pharmaceutical companies and has users, big and small, in more than 150 countries. There are 80 different conversations running through the company’s platform related to COVID-19, such as vaccines or information on the impact of the disease on people who are already suffering from other diseases.
“It is rewarding to see how when you lower the barrier to communication, you can make a difference in health care,” Hill said.
Within3 was formed in 2008 with a different focus: to create a social network that would enable medical communication. However, due to the confidential nature of medical information, it became too complicated to pursue that format, he said.
In 2013, it began building out the online discussion platform that Within3 is today. Since then, the company has grown rapidly, over 50 percent last year, with projections to grow more than 130 percent this year, Hill said. Meanwhile, implementation grew 175 percent last year and is on pace to grow 250 percent this year.
The funding will be used to accelerate product innovation, build infrastructure to outpace growing demand, and expand internationally. Within3 expects to add to its 130-person workforce over the next two years, and will be focusing on the areas of product development and sales and marketing.
“Our growth was taking off, and coming into this year we were already thinking about a scaling partner to hit the next stage,” Hill said. “In March, we started talking to potential partners about what was available and shared our vision. During that process, we worked with Insight and found them to be a great fit, and moved forward after a good conversation on how we would build a great company together.”
The company continues to examine areas within the life sciences sector that are underserved and where it can build products and capabilities. Hill said Within3 has already identified 60 use cases and there are another 60 uses behind those in which to grow.
In addition, Within3 is looking for more ways to help its members.
“The work we are doing with the pharmaceutical companies is the tip of the iceberg,” Hill said. “There is a lot more work to do for our largest clients and also a plethora of other things we are not yet doing for our smaller ones.”
Illustration: Dom Guzman