eCardio, Preventice merge, Merck GHI Fund majority stakeholder

By Aditi Pai
12:30 pm
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bodyguardianRemote cardiac monitoring company eCardio has agreed to merge with wearable, remote monitoring device maker Preventice. The new company, which is called Preventice, said the merger will allow it to "drive innovation and growth in remote monitoring systems and mobile health applications".

Preventice's co-founder Jon Otterstatter will be the president and global strategy officer of the new company, while eCardio's founder and CEO, Larry Lawson, will take the role of CEO and chairman.

Just a few weeks before this merger, Merck acquired eCardio. The Merck Global Health Innovation Fund, which provided Preventice with funding when it was developing its peel-and-stick heart rate sensor, the BodyGuardian Remote Monitoring System, is the primary stockholder in the new company. 

"This strategic combination with Preventice will provide physicians with even greater access to products and services in the emerging market of cardiac remote patient care -- one of the fastest growing segments in telehealth," Larry Lawson, the new chief executive officer of Preventice said in a statement. "eCardio has focused on providing physician practices, academic medical centers and hospitals with the value-add tools they need to diagnose patients. In addition to mobile cardiac telemetry monitoring, streamlined reports via customized web portals, and successful EMR integrations, our customers can now look forward to a more robust and cost-effective offering."

Preventice's device, the BodyGaurdian RMS detects and monitors nonlethal cardiac arrhythmias in ambulatory patients. The device uses an algorithm developed by the Mayo Clinic, sensor technology from STMicroelectronics, and wireless technology from Samsung. Patients using the system receive a number of peel-and-stick patches, two sensor units, plus a dedicated smartphone with preloaded software. BodyGuardian commercially launched in May 2013 for providers and organizations that work with providers. Its FDA clearance is for prescription use only.

eCardio offers several different devices that diagnose and monitor cardiac arrhythmias, but the company's remote diagnostic services are used by smartphone-connected heart rate monitoring device maker Alivecor. In 2009, Inc Magazine reported that eCardio had generated $21.4 million in revenue in 2008.

The new company will run operations out of eCardio's Houston office, while clinical research and product development work will move to Preventice's office in Rochester, Minnesota. eCardio's two independent diagnostic testing facilities, one in Houston and one in San Francisco, that will not move or change their focus, the company said.

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