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Third-party MI Service Provider Rimag Carries Out its Series C Funding Round
COVID-19 and China
Person is being examined by an MI device. Image credit to Ken Treloar on Unsplash

Rimag (一脉阳光), a Shenzhen based third-party medical imaging (MI) service provider, carried out its Series C financing round worth of "hundreds of millions" led by PICC on June 2, 2019. The company's previous USD 64 millions of Series B round of financing was led by Baidu Ventures in January 2018.

Although the exact amount has remained undisclosed, the transaction bolstered the confidence of the entire MI industry chain. This round has also been one of the biggest in China's third-party medical space in terms of the funds raised.

Rimag's core services include a medical imaging cloud service platform, independent medical imaging centers, and a third-party research facility. Together, they aim tosolve the financial and technical problems of the industry.

MI processing and analysis require high technical sophistication, well-cultivated doctors and expensive hardware, that is China is not abundant of in per-capita terms. (Find our exclusive interview with 12Sigma to get a glimpse of the issue) The company is trying to create value by filling these industrial gaps with cost-effective solutions.

Since the beginning of 2018, China's MI industry has been soaked with VC money, raising several questions from industry experts towards the sector. On the other hand, there are several bullish and optimistic standpoints of the issue. 

According to vcbeat, following this round of financing, Rimag will consider developing an MI Cloud and design health management products for cardiovascular diseases with PICC, which are highly dependent on MI examination. 

Considering China's underdeveloped medicare industry and high out-of-pocket costs in MI examinations, a collaboration of a third-party MI company and an insurer may yield fruitful results in the long term. 

Yet, it remains an enigma  whether this industry will be regulated by CFDA (China Food and Drug Administration) as part of an official strategy to promote AI-supported MI products in China. In fact, even if AI-supported MI services are excluded from the market, the industry is still a fast-growing sector with bright prospects  for the investor.

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