Startup Profile: Diabdis
Diabetes is one of the fastest growing epidemics of our time. At the moment it affects 382 million people worldwide, and is estimated to reach 592 million in 2035. Most of those people are not under supervision of diabetologists, which may result in multiple complications, such as nephropathy, neuropathy or retinopathy. "We are here to make a change" say Magdalena Dutkiewicz, Tomasz Dąbrowski and Szymon Dziedzic, who have developed the Diabdis.com tool.
What is Diabdis.com?
Diabdis is a Diabetes Control Programme and device, that transfers data from the glukometer to the cloud. It is a complex proposition for people who are affected by diabetes and want to take care of their health. "Diabetes is a very specific illness - when decompensated it leads to death. That's why self control is so important for people, who are sick" says Szymon Dziedzic, CMO, Diabdis.com. "Diabdis makes control more effective and way easier."
How did you come up with the idea?
"I have worked with Szymon for nearly 10 years now. We started from clinical trials phase II and III, and continued with online healthcare solutions. One we learned most from was telemedical platform qzdrowiu.pl. It inspired us to work with mhealth" says Tomasz Dąbrowski, CEO, Diabdis.com.
Who is it for and what does it do?
Diabdis was made to make diabetics healthier. Very often people affected by diabetes do not have contact with diabetologist frequently enough, or even at all. We fill that gap. Unsupervised by regular medical care, the user gets constant access to specialists and starts to collect and analyse glycaemia results, which are crucial activities, that lead to compensated diabetes, a goal for every diabetic.
The process is very simple:
The user passes data from his device to our app, it takes up to 20 seconds. Our algorithms and Diabdis Med Team analyse the data. The Med Team constantly supports users and work with them on improving results. We are currently are running a pilot project, with 50 testers, including children, teenagers, adults and the elderly. As diabetes affects people in multiple age groups our goal is to support each of them in a specific way" says Magdalena Dutkiewicz, COO, Diabdis.com, "Preparing dedicated communication channels and communicates is very exciting."
How much capital have you invested at the start? What was the money spent on?
"First phase of the project was financed with our private funds. Second phase is less than £130k" says Tomasz, "funds were spent on R&D, hardware, web and mobile platforms and building quality edu-med programme."
Is the product ready for launch?
"We have run a pilot of the project with testers based in UK and Poland" says Magdalena, "At the moment we are focusing on adjusting the solutions to user's needs. Basically, we need to check what works best."
Are there any similar products to Diabdis worldwide?
"Diabdis is unique, but there are some solutions in USA and EU, that are interesting. We enjoy what mysugr and glooko are doing" says Tomasz.
"What differs us is complexity. Diabdis is not only a tool to gather and analyse data, but also an education programme and a medical consultation centre" says Szymon.
How are you going to attract customers?
"We really don't have to do it. Diabetics were waiting for this type of project for quite a while now" says Magdalena, "we received number of applications for each place of the pilot. At the moment we have a few hundred people on the waiting list for the next year."
What is your business model?
"Our business model is not something we want to reveal at this very moment" says Tomasz, "all I'm going to say is that we are doing everything we can so that Diabdis can be free for the end user."
What are your promotional ideas?
"Diabetes is a very specific illness. It affects people of all ages. Communication channels vary on the concrete target group. For example elderly are contacted by offline media, while teenagers get most communication online" says Magdalena.
Can you tell more about results of the project? Do you already have users?
"It is too early to speak about results, as the pilot ends in 2015" says Szymon. "50 users have taken part in the tests and there are a few hundred on the waiting list."
What are your plans for the future? Do you want to go global?
"Currently Diabdis has users from two countries, but we don't want to stop there" says Tomasz . "Yes, we want to go global."
What would you say is most important in running an online business?
"Putting the user in a centre position is very important. It makes people want to work with you. Diabdis currently has few hundreds of people gathered around the idea. They are 'prosumers', helping co-create the solutions with us. And this is something amazing!"