Read more here.
We're proud of the team at Guardian Fueling Technologies. Two years ago they laid out a plan of geographic expansion. In just 15 months, the company has expanded to five branches across Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina helping customers receive consistent, high quality service. We are extremely excited to welcome Southeaster Petroleum Services (SEPS) of Charlotte into the Guardian family. We believe they will be a great fit!
Read more here.
One lesson that we have learned owning, operating and investing in businesses is that occasionally operations can fit better with partners. These partners can offer stakeholders – such as patients, customers, employees, vendors and contractors – outstanding services to patients based upon their own infrastructure and operations within their communities as well as growth opportunities for employees.
This is the case we found ourselves in with Cornerstone Medical Center and the opportunity to partner with CHI. We are excited to announce that CHI has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Cornerstone and integrate it within its health system in Southeastern Tennessee, and now, the adjacent Northwest Georgia.
We expect the transaction to close by the end of 2017.
Click here for the full article.
Two contrasting, critical theories in evolution are gradualism and punctuated equilibrium which relate to the ways that species evolve. Gradualism, as its name implies, is the theory that change occurs slowly, constantly and in almost imperceptible ways is attributed to Charles Darwin. In Punctuated Equilibrium, a theory proposed by Stephen Jay Gould and Niles Eldredge, changes come in massive spurts, often due to a catalyst that dramatically changes an environment.
Industries are no different. They can have consistent, gradual change on the margins; then there is a change or series of them that create disruption that will cause tectonic shifts in the competitive landscape over a relatively short period of time, such as a decade or two.
We believe that in healthcare in the US we’re in a period of Punctuated Equilibrium.
According to an article in PwC’s strategy + business, there’s a huge opportunity as the healthcare market evolves. Take note of two critical figures:
These two signposts of the opportunity intersect with a third critical trend – the “Amazon Expectation” held by consumers. As consumers have enjoyed twenty years of interacting with “the most customer-centric company in the world," their expectations around convenience, cost and ease of interaction have increased greatly. This cheaper, faster and everywhere assumption will have dramatic impacts on healthcare delivery.
At ValorBridge, we have two portfolio companies in the sweet spot of this trend – ER Express and MyIdealDoctor.
However the system evolves, the changes will be massive.
Click for strategy + business article
Xconomy Wisconsin — Since launching in 2014, Redox, a Madison, WI-based tech startup, has worked with other healthcare software companies to set up data feeds between their applications and the computerized patient records systems used in hospitals and clinics across the country.
Redox has now begun selling its digital tools under a slightly different business model, where healthcare providers, rather than software vendors, pay to use Redox’s products for exchanging patient data.
James Taylor's not the only one who has Carolina on his mind. We're excited that Guardian Fueling Technologies has announced (Link: here) its expansion into the North & South Carolina markets with the opening of two branches - Raleigh-Durham, NC and Columbia, SC. 2017 should bring the company ample growth through serving the great customers with fueling operations throughout the Carolinas.
Take it away James:
The familiar quote "History may not repeat itself. But it does rhyme," that is attributed to Mark Twain, is at play in health care again. Behavioral health facilities are experiencing a similar trend that we have seen with Emergency Rooms at hospitals - declining capacity while demand increases. The result is stress on the remaining facilities, over-worked employees and potentially lower satisfaction and adverse outcomes for patients. As the graph below highlights from a blog post in Hospitals & Health Networks (Link to article), psych units at hospitals and psychiatric hospitals have declined by approximately 1/3rd in 15 years.
Behavioral health can impact medical outcomes. How can a health system, provider or patient address reduced access to these services? Telehealth is a great option to connect with behavioral health providers who have capacity to counsel patients who need the support. Several telehealth providers, including our portfolio company MyIdealDoctor launched or scaled behavioral health offerings in 2016. Increased access to behavioral health practitioners can help reduce the costs to the entire health care system.
Wouldn't you listen if one of the wealthiest people in the world, one who has evaluated thousands of businesses, offered a few words of advice? Recently Jim Weber, the CEO of Brooks Running and one of Warren Buffett's CEOs, shared what that advice would be:
Focus on building the strongest brand possible (interview here).
Members of the ValorBridge team have attended the Berkshire Hathaway shareholder meeting for over a decade. At several meetings, Warren Buffett has made the comment that the most important advice he provides to his CEOs is to make sure the competitive advantage expands every year. Figure out why the customers return and focus on getting better at that.
For Weber, who runs a consumer products company, brand is paramount. His competitive advantage is the trust and loyalty he builds with his core customers, runners. As the company improves that experience, year after year, step by step, the long term value of those customers and of Brooks, increases.
Successful turnarounds are often more about continuous improvements than about radical change. Those improvements occur behind the scenes in ways that make interaction with patients and physicians simpler.
A recent profile of Cornerstone Medical Center provides an example. From the outside it may appear that not much has changed; yet inside, life is getting better for patients and physicians.
One change has been the addition of ER Express, which enables online reservation and schedule for the emergency room. Another improvement is the application of ER Passport, which enables referring physicians in the North Georgia community.
Link to the article from North Georgia News: here