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The Musculoskeletal New Ventures Conference: A Pop-Up Think Tank That Delivers in a Storm

by Elizabeth Hofheinz, M.P.H., M.Ed.

In uncertain times, it’s reassuring to know that some things don’t change. And in the case of the esteemed Musculoskeletal New Ventures Conference (MNVC), they get even better.

On October 16, 2020, MNVC will kick off its 18th annual event, this year comprised of four 2-hour online sessions replete with investment bankers, Wall Street analysts, venture capitalists, business development specialists, and entrepreneurs with their cadre of new and emerging therapies and diagnostics.

Committed to keeping the musculoskeletal investment community safe, the MNVC team decided on a virtual format and has packed it with information from trusted experts who bring penetrating insight into the latest developments in our field.

Gary Stevenson, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of MB Venture Partners, is hosting the MNVC for the 18th year. He states, “Covid-19 has forced us all to re-envision our processes, expectations, and assumptions about how we do business. Although change can be uncomfortable, we are witnessing the initial stages of rebirth in our industry. This conference is in essence a brain trust where participants can learn about how various startups and strategics have contended with the pandemic and what they have planned over the next several months and years.”

Offering a balance of veteran MNVC presenters and those who are new to the event, this year’s conference features a mix of the various musculoskeletal spaces, including spine, hip and knee, foot and ankle, trauma, and sports medicine.

“With registration now unburdened by the limitations of travel,” says Stevenson, “we anticipate a full house, with roughly one-third entrepreneurs/startups, one-third investors, and one-third business development experts who are on a quest for solid investments and/or acquisitions.”

And a bonus? The timing could not be better as the majority of the large strategics are now releasing their expectations for the third and fourth quarters.

On the agenda for October 16, 2020:

  • Piper Sandler — JP Peltier and Charles Hamilton
  • Healthpoint Capital — Mike Mogul and Laing Rikkers
  • CrossRoads Extremity — Vernon Hartdegen and Chad Hollis
  • IlluminOss — Bob Rabiner and Mike Mogul
  • Nanovis — Matt Hedrick and Jeff Shepherd

Mike Mogul, President and Managing Director of Healthpoint Capital, states, “We look forward to highlighting the challenges that small, fast-growing medtech companies face and how we can support their development in terms of economic growth and/or organization maturity. Our goal is to prepare them to be exciting, impactful and seamless additions to the larger firms that will eventually acquire them.”

“As large companies continue consolidation of mid-size competitors and distribution channels, the path to commercialization for small companies gets harder. Additionally, the regulatory, quality and compliance expectations of the larger companies also continue to rise and are generally much higher than the small companies hoping to be acquired. This can become a significant obstacle to exit.”

“In addition,” says Mogul, “the consolidation of ever larger medtech strategics causes more and more of the exciting developments in medtech to emanate from small, nimble companies. These enterprises often reach critical points in their journey where they need expertise and experience that was not needed in their start-up phase but will be critical to achieving their goals.”

A five-year veteran of the MNVC, CrossRoads Extremity Systems, a portfolio company of both MB Venture Partners and Healthpoint Capital, will also be on the panel presenting again this year. Representing CrossRoads will be Vernon Hartdegen, company Co-Founder, President and CEO. “We have found the MNVC to be a thoroughly informative event that is a reliable barometer of industry happenings. It’s a perfect place to gather ‘intel’ regarding how investors and strategics are thinking about companies our size.”

As for how they are faring, “We are thrilled to report that our Q3 performance was exceptional with better than anticipated results fueling our strong momentum headed into Q4. The CrossRoads team continues in our efforts to deliver breakthroughs for faster healing.”

Also representing CrossRoads on the panel is company Co-Founder, Chad Hollis. “While historically, we have been R&D-driven, we have broadened our leadership with industry veterans and are rapidly expanding our offerings, with eight products in queue for launch and numerous others in the advanced development phase.”

“In addition to organic product development and surgeons who approach us with IP, we have completed our first acquisition and the related technologies that will come to market at the end of this year.”

Participants will also learn how CrossRoads has combined its versatile, all-metal instrumentation and put it in a sterile configuration—and how they monetized it. On the Covid-19 front, Hartdegen and Hollis will detail how the pandemic affected their business and how they have successfully weathered the storm.

Presenting at MNVC for the first time is Nanovis, LLC, represented by CEO Matt Hedrick. “We are so pleased to have the opportunity to highlight our company mission and the numerous benefits of our nanotube and anti-infection technology. The Nanovis team is motivated by the possibility of making an appreciable difference for humanity. The MNVC will help us fulfill that mission by expanding our presence in the industry and furthering our efforts to find partners for our technology in a variety of market segments.”

Gary Stevenson: “The 2020 MNVC is bringing together a full cadre of dynamic thought leaders in the musculoskeletal space, each of whom will share their success stories, advice and forecasts for the future.”

MNVC…making new ventures come alive.

To register for the first of the four “pop-up think tanks” on October 16, please visit:


Future sessions: October 23, November 13, November 20.

Josh Sandberg

Josh Sandberg is the President and CEO of Ortho Spine Partners and sits on several company and industry related Boards. He also is the Creator and Editor of OrthoSpineNews.

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