Latecomer Deepwise Carries Out its Series C, Securing Fourth Round in Two Years
COVID-19 and China
Qiao Xin, Co-founder and CEO of Deepwise Photo: Curtesy of Qiao Xin

On June 10, 2019,  Deepwise (深睿医疗) secured its Series C funding round at an undisclosed amount, led by Sunshine Insurance Group (阳光保险集团)), Changfazhan (昌发展), SRHC (丝路华创) and Sunland Fund (蓝资本跟投).  Following this round, Deepwise had undertaken its fourth round of financing since its founding in 2017. 

Deepwise, formerly known as AI Lab Project of Peking University, transformed into a profit-maximizing institution in 2017. Boosted by its vast academic and scientific network, Deepwise has landed its products in more than 400 hospitals, in two years. 

The company provides AI-driven medical image (MI) diagnostic support solutions, in a move to monetize China's gigantic medical data pool and market. Thus, the company concentrates deep learning powered products and positions itself as one of the most assertive companies amongst several others in China's medical AI field — giving the competitors a run for their money.  

Following the latest round, Qiao Xin (乔昕), Co-founder and CEO of Deepwise said that Deepwise would continue to expand its product diversity and further improve products' diagnosis precision thanks to their ever-accelerated deep learning capacity.

Medical AI industry has attracted several forms of investors from state-backed funds to the insurance companies. The latest round of Deepwise, for instance, led by an insurance company Sunshine Insurance Group; bringing about an explicit hint for the regulatory atmosphere for the near future of China's medical-AI scene.

Prior to Series C, Deepwise had successfully raised around CNY 300 million (USD 43 million) in three rounds of financing, as a one-and-a-half years old startup. 

As Deepwise gets momentum at a high-paced, its business prospects and China's medical AI industry gets more mature. There are numerous other Chinese companies on the same scene with Deepwise, such as Huiyihuiying (汇医慧影), 12Sigma (图玛深维), Baheal Intelligent Technology (百洋智能科技), LinkDoc (零氪科技) and others.

"China's diagnostic medical imaging market is advanced than of in the US and Japan by a considerable margin, mainly driven by the medical data accessibility and the domestic market," says Anne Ma, the founder and CEO of Shukun Technology, another Chinese AI-diagnosis developer of China.

The well-fit market need, regulatory conditions and China's advanced AI scene jointly bring about a developed and diversified medical-AI industry in China. 

For a Medtech company that has deep learning and AI at its core, the most critical indicator is its collaborative hospital network and capacity. Mostly, it is significantly challenging for such companies to convince third parties and hospitals to use their product because the stakes are high in the healthcare business. 

The C-Suite members and an administrative class of Deepwise are the veterans of either established companies such as GE or affiliated with a highly prestigious research institution, such as Peking University. 

This network presents a distinct advantage for the company and allows Deepwise to implement and further develop its learning algorithms; bringing about a grounded possibility for a latecomer to compete with the early-mover heavyweights of the industry. 

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