The consumerization of healthcare, the idea that consumers (or patients) expect their healthcare experience to map to the ease of use and user experience that they get in other parts of the economy and that consumers increasingly are taking command of their own healthcare, is a key theme we’ve been investing behind for several years at Spectrum Equity. This trend has led to our investments in GoodRx and Payer Compass, and most recently to our investment in PWNHealth (PWN). PWN is specifically capitalizing on this trend within diagnostic testing by connecting patients, physicians, and laboratories via a comprehensive and compliant network that increases access for patients and encourages preventative and personalized health. The company is the clear market leader in this category, working with direct-to-consumer testing brands, diagnostic testing laboratories, health plans, and life sciences companies.
We first met PWN CEO Sanjay Pingle in 2017 and have been continually impressed with how he and his team have scaled the business since then. PWN’s offering leverages a proprietary technology platform that automates highly complex workflows across numerous constituents and does so in a compliant way. This allows PWN’s customers and partners to adhere to various state and federal regulations and standards that would otherwise be extremely difficult for them to monitor. The below chart illustrates a typical end consumer’s journey from seeking an online test through the delivery of results, guidance, and future care.
We began discussing an opportunity to invest in PWN at an interesting time…early March 2020. Our multi-year dialogue and several prior in-person meetings with Sanjay and the management team helped facilitate a transition to remote diligence this spring / summer. We all adapted to the circumstances, and in some regards, it helped us organize workstreams efficiently, and we even figured out a socially distanced management meeting outdoors. We also had the benefit of leveraging our portfolio during diligence efforts as several of our businesses are, or are considering, working with PWN. Their insights along with our analysis helped inform our investment thesis and plans for future growth initiatives.
We’ve been incredibly impressed with the company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic as it is serving a critical role in addressing testing challenges in this country, both through existing and new customer relationships. Much like several other behavioral changes that COVID-19 has accelerated across the broader economy, it’s clear to us that safe and easy access to diagnostic testing and professional physician guidance through telehealth is here to stay in a meaningful way. We’re thrilled to support PWN’s mission to make diagnostic testing more accessible nationwide via their health plan, lab, employer and testing company partners, and to help Sanjay and the management team continue to lead and innovate within the category.
If you’d like to learn more about the company, read the press release about Spectrum’s partnership with PWNHealth.