Andover, Mass. – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG; AEX: PHIA) today announced the expansion of its partnership with 1776 as the 2016 global health sponsor for the incubator’s Challenge Cup Competition and Challenge Festival. The growth of Philips 1776 partnership – from the 2015 sponsor of the Washington, D.C.-based 1776 Challenge Festival to a global health sponsorship in 2016 – highlights the company’s commitment to the disruptive healthcare innovation that can come from an interconnected, global startup ecosystem.
According to the Global Age Watch Index, 20 percent of the global population will be over 60 years of age by 2050. In addition, the prevalence and burden of chronic disease, which already accounts for around 70 percent of the global healthcare budget,¹ is increasing worldwide. Add to these realities the challenges of interoperability, privacy and security and the standardization of care, and the need for disruptive innovation on the global and local level is undeniably clear.
“There has never been a greater need for connected, sustainable healthcare, and there has never been a greater opportunity for entrepreneurs and innovators to connect people, data and technologies to transform lives around the world,” said Jeroen Tas, CEO, Healthcare Informatics Solutions and Services, Philips. “We are excited to expand our partnership with 1776 and continue to drive the open innovation that a healthy, globally connected startup ecosystem can contribute to a healthier society.”
By bringing together startups working to shape the future of health, in addition to education, energy, transportation, money, food and security, the 1776 Challenge Cup and Challenge Festival provide an early glimpse of tomorrow’s innovations – and enable relationship building between traditional and nontraditional partners, as all stakeholders work to navigate global challenges in today’s digital information economy.
Startups will compete at local, regional and global levels, with the Challenge Festival tournament culminating in D.C. in June 2016. More than 80 startups will attend the week of events, which include mentor and investor meetings, industry trend discussions and a pitch competition.
“Challenge Cup is more than a competition — it is a growing movement of entrepreneurs and startup community leaders in cities ranging from Mexico City and London to Singapore and Nairobi, who believe entrepreneurship can help solve some of the world’s most complicated problems,” said 1776 co-founder Donna Harris. “We are proud to partner for the second year with Philips and the world’s leading startups to exemplify how, around the world and with even the most challenging issues, collaboration and open innovation can lead to meaningful change.”
In addition to its 1776 partnership, Philips supports local innovators and digital accelerator labs in Kenya and India and is testing proof-of-concept innovations in many more countries around the world. Together with leading universities, research institutes and entrepreneurs and in partnership with government and humanitarian organizations like UNICEF, Philips is delivering tablet and smartphone enabled mobile telehealth solutions for midwives to monitor at-risk pregnant women in Indonesia and an automated respiration monitor to help improve the diagnosis and treatment of childhood pneumonia in Africa and India .
A full roster of 1776 Challenge Cup and Challenge Festival speakers and events will be announced in the coming weeks, and the current schedule can be found here.
¹ World Economic Forum, EFPIA, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion