After leading several startups in the 1990s, serial entrepreneur Narayan Laksham – who has incorporated three businesses with BizFilings over the years – turned his sights to the healthtech industry, partnering with a friend, who is a hospital executive, to build Simplify OR.
The company’s technology streamlines orthopedic procedures in hospitals, which are typically complicated by orders for individual surgeries. Artificial hips, plates or screws to hold shattered bones together are usually consigned, as needed, by vendors, who are later reimbursed, a process that requires a mountain of paperwork. Simplify OR makes this system easier, helping hospitals improve record accuracy, reduce costs and boost patient outcomes.
By capitalizing on a high-cost concern for hospitals and medical centers, Laksham and his partner secured almost immediate success.
"OR surgeries are often inescapably urgent — you can’t put off mending a shattered bone — and routinely top $100,000. With 15 million to 20 million orthopedic surgeries performed in the United States each year, a technology that improves efficiencies can produce significant savings,” says Laksham.
In only 11 months since its launch, Simplify OR is already in use in one medical center. What’s more, the team is close to signing a contract with a large southern hospital system with approximately ten facilities. Laksham expects demand to grow quickly.
After years as an entrepreneur, Laksham knows it’s important to have a plan, but also remain nimble. At Simplify OR, after initial case studies and extensive conversations with hospital stakeholders, including chief financial officers and operating room directors, the company adjusted its main sales strategy and pricing model. Given the shifting sands of economic and healthcare policy, such flexibility is a common and healthy part of the journey of a healthtech startup.
“The most important thing is to listen to the customers, test, learn and adjust your models accordingly,” Laksham says.
Simply OR is self-funded, but, Laksham notes, that isn’t an option for many companies. While securing funding might seem like the remedy to any entrepreneur’s problems, it often is just the beginning. Investors, depending on who they are and their demands, can have a very real impact on a venture’s model and its success or failure.
Laksham’s advice: “Be sure to do your homework during your search for funding so you understand all of the ramifications attached to money you accept.”
"From HIPAA rules to other government standards and mandates, compliance is especially critical in the healthcare industry. At Simplify OR, staying on top of compliance requirements - whether it’s business incorporation or data security - has been central to its business model from the very beginning," Laksham said.
To ensure every license and permit is in hand and all requirements are satisfied, Laksham recommends entrepreneurs work with trusted advisors, who can help fill any holes in expertise, especially when it comes to complying with FDA regulations. Every business should be designed and built around full compliance, says Laksham, not just because government regulators require it, but because investors and customers demand it. “BizFilings has great options to choose from while providing clarity on the type of company to be incorporated. I have incorporated both ‘C’ corps and LLC” said Laksham.