Hotel California

Hotel California

Years ago Diabetic Investor noted that the wacky world of diabetes is not unlike a great Eagles song; Hotel California which according to the song “you can check out but never leave.” Yes it is amazing how many executives who’ve left this wacky world only to come back for more punishment. The last example of this came yesterday when iGlucose announced that Wycliffe (Cliff) X. McIntosh has joined the company as their Chief Executive Officer.

According to a company issued press release; “Cliff McIntosh has over 30 years of medical device and diagnostic experience with much of his knowledge coming from his senior commercial roles at Johnson & Johnson and several early stage medical device companies. During his tenure with the multi-national medical device, pharmaceutical, and consumer goods manufacturer, he was responsible for establishing blood glucose monitoring market leadership across international regions and launched the successful LifeScan* One Touch®* brand in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. He was also instrumental in creating the global Johnson & Johnson Diabetes Institute and plans to continue his success with the iGlucose® Blood Glucose Monitoring System.”

iGlucose is yet another entrant in the interconnected diabetes management (IDM) space and like Telcare, iHealth and Livongo, just to name a few, has a conventional glucose meter that …wait for it… communicates with the cloud. Looking over the company’s web site – – this product isn’t offering anything that different from anyone else in this space which begs the question are these newcomers to BGM who have way cool systems that communicate with what’s becoming a very crowded cloud already becoming a copycat, me-too space? Actually that’s a trick question but Diabetic Investor will forgive anyone who started laughing.

Even though IDM hasn’t truly arrived already it’s following the path set by the old guard, namely why reinvent the wheel when it’s so much easier to copy somebody else’s good idea.

At some point the people who invest in these newcomers will realize that the IDM space as way cool as it is will not support any company who merely has a copycat, me-too product. That as we have been stating over and over it’s not about data collection or even data transmission, IDM is about turning this data into actionable information. That in the future it will be systems not products that matter. That in the future it’s all about outcomes.

While we hope we’re wrong here our 20 odd years covering this wacky world tells us many of the people and/or firms who invested will walk away empty handed. That IDM, and again we hope we are wrong, could be another money loser like non-invasive glucose monitors or now non-invasive continuous glucose monitors. Now at this point we could go into our standard spiel about how dumb these investors can be, how easily duped they are and how it’s easier to steal money with a good PowerPoint presentation than a gun but that would be too easy.

The reality is there are some companies who get it, who see the future and have systems that are very worthy of investor money. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again IDM has the potential to transform diabetes management for the better. That when used as intended it can and does have a very positive impact on outcomes. Unlike other Holy Grails, i.e. non-invasive anything, IDM is already ready for prime-time.

So stay tuned folks we guarantee there will be some much needed shake out in this space.  Things are getting interesting, very interesting indeed.