GE Healthcare has announced the expansion of its consulting business through the acquisition of a 20% stake in global venture management company Pilot Lite Ventures (PLV). The final goal of the operation is to extend GE’s consulting business beyond hospitals and social care to life sciences companies and to enter into the global market of unexploited healthcare and wellness R&D, orphaned IP and early-stage technology, a sector with an estimated value of $28 billion. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed; GE has the option to increase its stake in future.

London-based Pilot Lite Ventures has introduced the new concept of “venture management. The company collaborates with major corporates to validate, launch and commercialize new ventures, stranded IP, products and services. PLV activities are focused on translating early-stage innovations – often suffering for disinvestments because of corporates’ changes of strategy or lack of capital allocation – into commercially viable products and investable portfolios. Its activities will now be synergistic to the GE Healthcare Partners’ ones, more focused on analytics-based consulting solutions to health and social care organisations.

The eight stage “venture management” process de-risks the initial ‘white space’ origination of IP and then accelerates its journey to market as well as into new business models.  According to Mike Anstey, CEO of PLV, “venture management” delivers accelerated market penetration and first revenues, not more paperwork and strategy. “Big evolving markets like healthcare have big evolving problems. Pilot Lite has a proven, systemic approach to commercializing IP and innovation, including putting specialist teams on the ground to manage new or previously-retired commercial ventures for major corporates. Adding this unique solution set to our offering will enable us to better meet our clients’ needs and to differentiate GE Healthcare Partners from traditional consultancy models”, said John Deverill, Managing Partner at GE Healthcare Partners.