Sarasota, Florida-based Voalte, which offers a point of care communications application for nurses, recently named its Founder and VP of Innovation Trey Lauderdale as the company's new president. Voalte's longtime CEO Rob Campbell has since departed the company and is searching for other startup opportunities in the area.
Voalte provides nurses with voice, alert and text capabilities on a hospital-wide system. While the service is primarily used on iPod touch devises, it also works on iPhones and iPads.
Lauderdale began his company in 2008, shortly after the iPhone first launched, and before many other smartphone-based communication services were angling to get their products in the hands of healthcare providers. This early launch allowed him to secure pilot agreements with larger hospitals that saw the potential of smartphones in healthcare.
"When I look back at my first business plan, we thought we'd be where we were at now back in 2010, but we are where we are," Lauderdale said. "It was a tough ride in the beginning but anytime you are a pioneer in a new market -- it's always tough in the beginning."
At the end of 2012, Voalte raised $6 million from an undisclosed healthcare information technology leader with the intention of tripling their workforce of 50 to 150 employees, a jump from the 22 employees they had in 2011. A Sarasota Herald Tribune interview in 2012 quoted Campbell saying the company's yearly revenue is "just shy of ten million".
Voalte's healthcare provider customers include Massachusetts General Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital, and Nebraska Medical Center among others, while its developmental partners include Cedars-Sinai, Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, and Huntington Medical Center. Most recently, nurses at Los Angeles Cedars-Sinai were inspired after working with Voalte to let mothers see their newborn babies in the NICU via iPads running FaceTime.
Lauderdale plans to continue forming "key alliances and partnerships" with EMR vendors and other healthcare information systems vendors to integrate Voalte's communication services. As software companies continue to eat the world, Voalte still finds itself competing with hardware device companies.
"You know, Spectralink, Cisco, Ascom wireless phones -- everyone is realizing those aren't the future,"Lauderdale said. "Those are kind of the typewriters of communication."