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Alphabet’s Verily scores a $1B cash infusion—here’s where we think it’s headed next

The news: Verily announced a whopping $1 billion investment (led by parent company Alphabet) to support Verily’s business expansion focused on precision health, according to the company.

Healthcare remix: Verily reshuffled its leadership to focus on healthcare—namely plans to hire a new healthcare-focused CFO.

Alongside the investment announcement, Verily also announced its CFO, Deepak Ahuja, will step down as the company searches for a new CFO “with a deep healthcare background for the next phase of [its] growth,” per Insider.

  • This isn’t the only time Verily restructured its C-suite to skew toward healthcare.
  • Last year, it onboarded a new president for its clinical trial research business, Dr. Amy Abernathy, M.D., Ph.D. Abernathy previously served as the principal deputy commissioner of food and drugs at the FDA for two years.

The first signal: Last year, Verily acquired clinical trial management platform SignalPath—marking its first major acquisition and signaling a stronger healthcare focus.

  • SignalPath’s clinical trial software, TrialPath, digitizes research protocols, and virtually tracks every step of clinical trials (from budgeting to site management).
  • Plus, SignalPath’s platform neatly complements Verily’s end-to-end digital clinical research solution, Project Baseline (a community of over 500,000 individuals and pharma partners).

What’s next? We could see Verily integrate its freshly funded precision medicine initiatives with its clinical trial business.

Integrating the two businesses could help with a major limitation of clinical trials: a lack of diverse participants.

  • Clinical trial participation is often limited by who researchers are able to recruit, and as a result, there’s far more white than non-white patients enrolled in trials.
  • This challenges the generalizability of clinical trial results across patient populations, and could stymie Verily’s broader research efforts.

This article originally appeared in Insider Intelligence's Digital Health Briefing—a daily recap of top stories reshaping the healthcare industry. Subscribe to have more hard-hitting takeaways delivered to your inbox daily.

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