An Inside Look At 4 Global Megatrends
Many factors are driving and will drive the global health market in the future. An ageing global population, major advancements in medical and digital technologies, and an increasing health-consciousness in the population, are rapidly shaping a fast-growing trillion-dollar sector. A closer understanding of these trends is fundamental for investors to accurately pinpoint which companies and emerging startups are best-positioned to take advantage of them in the coming years.
The World is Ageing (Quickly)
After growing exponentially from 3 billion in 1960 to 7.6 billion currently, the world’s population is currently experiencing its most significant ageing phase ever. In the developed world, the percentage of seniors (people aged 65 and older) is reaching record numbers – 26.3 % in Japan, 22.4% in Italy and 21.2% in Germany. Emerging countries, considered to be the engines of world economic growth, are also experiencing ageing populations, as births level off while medical conditions improve. China’s over-65s will rise from 122 million in 2017 to approximately 330 million in 2050. Between 2015 and 2030, the number of people in the world aged 60 years or over is projected to grow by 56%, from 901 MLN to 1.4 BLN. According to the World Health Organization, nearly two billion people across the world are expected to be over 60 years old by 2050, a figure that’s more than triple what it was in 2000.
At the same time, people are living longer on account of progress in medical prevention, diagnostics and cures. Life expectancy in the UK is expected to grow from 86.7 in 2030 from 81.2 currently. The same trend is occurring in the developing world, with Chinese life expectancy expected to rise from 76.4 years to 79 by 2030. With the number of elderly increasing together with their longevity, the demand for health-related services is set to soar as the number of medical conditions increases.
Emerging Markets & Their Growing Healthcare Needs
With the world ageing, age-related conditions will continue to inevitably rise. In 2012 there were 14.1 million new cancer cases worldwide, a number set to grow to 21.7 million cases by 2030. Furthermore, as emerging markets move towards western-type lifestyles, with greater urbanisation and changing food consumption patterns, medical conditions will reflect this change. Diabetes is already affecting 110 million people in China, with the number expected to grow to 150 million by 2040. Cardiovascular events are predicted to increase by 50% between 2010 and 2030. Incidence rates for many diseases are growing faster in emerging markets as well. Patients undergoing dialysis in China are growing at 15% a year, compared to 2% in the EU and 3-4% in the USA.
For the first time in history, the bulk of disease incidence in emerging markets will be constituted by non-communicable diseases, related to the individual’s physical condition, lifestyle and genetics, rather than parasitic and communicable ones as in the past. The incidence of the latter will shrink from 55% of the total in 2008 to 30% in 2030. This trend directly feeds into the need for monitoring, measuring and collecting health and nutrition data from individuals in an effort to foster healthy living and stem the development of medical conditions.
Digital Health Technologies & Medical Innovation Boom
Advances in digital technology and medicine are increasingly shaping the global healthcare sector.
This includes the rise of mobile health apps, health analytics and personalised health systems. Consumers are increasingly taking their health into their own hands, collecting medical data via phone apps and wearables. The number of health app downloads reached 3.2 billion in 2016, compared to only 1.7 billion in 2013.
Medical research has also made significant inroads in the field of anti-ageing. An increasing number of scientific studies have indicated that lifetime health is linked to 60% to environmental/behavioural issues, 30% to genetics and only 10% to healthcare. Growing evidence points to the possibility of human life expectancy reaching and exceeding 125 years, with the potential of reaching 150. An increasing number of scientific studies show that life expectancy can be extended and ageing slowed with fitness/lifestyle planning personalised to the user’s genetic makeup. Diet and lifestyle management, coupled with an understanding of genetic markers, are hence rapidly becoming the priority of corporations and governments to improve lifestyle, prolong life expectancies and reduce healthcare costs.
A New Global Attitude To Health & Ageing
The current over-65 cohort in the developed world is considered the most health-conscious in history. Adults who smoke cigarettes declined from 20.9% in 2005 to 16.8% in 2014 in the USA. In the UK, the percentage of 18-24 year-olds smoking fell from 26% to 19% from 2010 to 2016. Consumption of alcohol per capita has been falling in developed markets since 1987. Nielsen’s 2015 Global Health and Wellness Report revealed that 50% of people are trying to lose weight, with 72% doing physical exercise and 75% changing their diet. Many of these people are happy to use technology to meet their health targets, with an estimated 95 million Americans using their smartphones as diagnostic tools.
At the same time, seniors control a dominant portion of national household wealth. The median net worth of US citizens aged 65 and over was $170,516 in 2016, compared to $35,000 for those aged 35 to 44. A similar distribution is found in Germany, the UK, Italy and the rest of the developed world. With the desire to keep healthy, the financial means to afford it, and increasing technological awareness, the market is ready for health solutions that can fulfil these needs.
Invest In The Anti-Ageing Revolution
Suisse Life Science Group
Modern life brings with it non-stop challenges to your health. Your work schedule will often clash with your health, sleep and eating needs. In addition, it is challenging to balance professional engagements with your family and personal life. What happens as a result is something that is feared, but all too common – premature aging.
Suisse Life Science Group (SLSG) was early to understand the connection between DNA, lifestyle and premature ageing. That is why in 2008 it began developing a technology that would combine DNA tests with optimised, tailor-made anti-ageing solutions in the form of skincare, nutrition planning and lifestyle management. After 6 years of research and fine-tuning, SLSG made the pre-market launch of iDDNA® in 2014, integrating the latest mobile innovations, DNA testing technology with a seamless customer experience. As development of iDDNA® progressed, interest in SLSG’s technology grew. Tamburi Investment Partners, Italy’s leading merchant bank, decided to invest in SLSG in 2015 as sales began in October of that year.
Today, iDDNA® is leading the market of tailor-made biologically-active treatments personalised to the user’s DNA, lifestyle and physical condition.
My iDDNA® users benefit from the Know Your DNA service, which through genome-mapping provides tailor-made anti-ageing treatments via phone app and on demand. It is a holistic solution that optimises all the factors that affect your wellness:
- Age Management – A personalised anti-ageing system based on your body’s unique biomarkers. A nutrition and exercise plan delivered to your smartphone, updated in real-time to your lifestyle needs.
- Diet – Matching your diet with your health needs and genetic markers, selecting a plan that contains the correct micronutrients adapted to your levels of physical activity. Scientifically bringing your body to its optimal weight, without resorting to calorie-counting.
- Skincare – Identifying your skin type, then sending you treatments that are 100% customised to your genetic profile and skin condition. All this paired with the My iDDNA® mobile app to help you fight UV and pollution damage in real-time, restoring collagen levels and making your skin brighter, tighter and younger looking.
- Lifestyle Management – Know exactly how much to sleep, what to eat, how much to exercise and when to time activities during your day. A mobile app solution based on your genetic profile which can be connected to your FitBit and iPhone HealthKit, adjusting instantly to your activity patterns.
Discover here how My iDDNA® has improved the health, fitness, skin condition and overall wellness of people of all genders, backgrounds and lifestyles. SLSG is now starting to create strategic global agreements to license the My iDDNA® technology for:
- Medical and government organisations to provide real-time patient lifestyle management
- Premium skincare brands to enhance and improve skincare products and customer experience
- Health insurers to reduce chronic disease and incentivise active prevention in their client base.
The digital health market is growing rapidly, and is expected to reach $206 BLN by 2020, or 161% larger than the 2015 figure.
SLSG is positioned to lead this trend, with a solution that covers all aspects of human health and wellness.