Donate   |   Home   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Join Now
Club Corner
Blog Home All Blogs
Search all posts for:   


Top tags: Membership  Alumni  Artificial Intelligence  Careers 


Posted By CBSACNY Healthcare Committee, Thursday, March 1, 2018

How Femtech, Genomics and Consumerism are Driving Change in Reproductive Medicine: A Recap


David Sable, MD (moderator)
Alan Copperman, MD
Susan Hertzberg, CEO, Prelude Fertility,
Mylene Yao, MD, CEO and co-founder, Univfy
Anne Morriss, CEO and co-founder, Genepeeks
Rebecca Kaden, partner, Union Square Ventures

Moderator David Sable's assessment of the forces that are changing reproductive medicine was a tour de force. He summarized key points in this must-read 3-part Forbes series, which is based in part on the panel discussion:  Part 1Part 2Part 3

For those who missed the January 24, 2018 meeting or want to refresh their memories, here's a brief recap:

Cool Stats: The IVF/reproductive medicine industry generates ~$5 billion in the US per year, a niche compared to big healthcare spend areas like cancer ($85 billion a year); 7 million women in the US suffer from infertility, but only a small percentage seek treatment; There is a severe shortage of reproductive medicine specialists and only 35 slots per year for endocrinology fellows in the field, hardly enough to satisfy demand, especially as market expands.  Egg freezing accounts for 30-40% of many practices. –David Sable

Big Trend: The industry is consolidating and expanding the range of services it offers to include new technologies and procedures for treating IVF as well as the use of reproductive technology for fertile couples, including those at risk of passing on genetic diseases. –David Sable

Gaps in Care Yield Opportunities for Entrepreneurs: Access to care is limited due to cost, stigma, unpredictable success rates; shortage of specialists; inefficient workflow (high personal touch now standard). –all panelists

What the Experts Say:

Union Square Ventures, as an early-stage venture firm, focuses on the intersection of technology and consumerism, according to partner Rebecca Kaden. With these priorities in mind, it sees opportunities to apply technology to mass-market, consumer-oriented strategies in fertility planning, notably addressing lack of scientific and medical knowledge and inadequate financing options for consumers. From providers’ perspective, technology can help improve branding.

Susan Hertzberg’s firm Prelude Fertility has a scale-up strategy to apply best practices and innovative consumer outreach and financing arrangements to expand access to care and quality of the patient experience. The lack of knowledge about basic reproductive concepts and biology is fueling the need for a massive public awareness campaign to educate women and their OB/GYNs/ primary care doctors about fertility options. A neat tidbit: the older the woman, the less likely she produces healthy eggs when seeking egg freezing options, so Prelude would like to ratchet down the age at which women opt for fertility planning by educating them because younger women have a better shot at successful IVF.

Alan Copperman’s many hats include co-founder and managing partner of RMA of NY, one of the nation’s largest networks of infertility clinics, which is using data-driven precision medicine and next-generation sequencing of embryos to optimize embryo selection in order to reduce failure rates of procedures and occurrence of multiple births. Copperman is also Vice-Chair of OB/Gyn at Mount Sinai Medical Center and CMO of the Mount Sinai’s new genomics platform company, Sema4Genomics. The focus of his remarks was the need for education of specialists in the field and expanding consumer access to quality care with better success rates.

Genepeeks, a computational genomics company offering pre-natal clinical genomics, is, among many other activities, making sense of genomic data gleaned from preconception screening. This is potentially an alternative to carrier screening, with a higher resolution, says co-founder and CEO Anne Morriss. Genepeeks considers the emotional and technical aspects of patient decisions as it accounts seeks to help patients make decisions along the treatment journey.

Univfy’s CEO Mylene Yao co-founded the company in the belief that data-driven predictive analytics could hold the key to making IVF more accessible, predictable, and affordable. The company has a clinically validated informatics platform that predicts patients’ likelihood of successful IVF, which enables it to offer risk-based, innovative financing options. This is particularly pertinent to the US, where most patients pay for treatment out of pocket, compared to ex-US, where third-party payors often cover the costs.

General Discussion:

·        Sandstone Diagnostics sells an FDA-approved, at-home test, available on Amazon, for checking sperm concentrations to find out male fertility levels and understand individual risk factors that may be causing low fertility levels. 

·        While we have the ability to screen for thousands of genetic abnormalities and, thanks to CRISPR, manipulate cells to eliminate mutant genes, we are still far from having the ability to select genetic traits we want due to the complexity of genetics.

·        Because IVF labs are so inefficient, innovations in robotics, microfluidics, artificial intelligence and other technologies could greatly improve efficiency. While the US currently spends about $5 billion on infertility treatment, that number could easily double if more people seek appropriate help. One challenge for automation is that embryos are fragile and difficult cells to work with, but the field has practically zero tolerance for errors.

And for those eager to view the discussion, please visit our YouTube Channel.


This recap was posted by the CBSACNY Healthcare Committee

Chair: Wendy Diller

A special thank you to our panelists, who led a thoughtful, eye-opening discussion on the challenges and opportunities awaiting fertility medicine entrepreneurs. Also, thanks to our gracious host, Wendy Goldstein & Cooley LLP.

This post has not been tagged.

Share |

Join CBSACNY to ... Bulletproof Your Career

Posted By Administrator, Thursday, September 14, 2017

Join CBSACNY to … Bulletproof Your Career                                                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             David Prince (CBS '03)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Marketing Committee Co-Chair

In 2009, I was in between jobs in media & advertising. Over the previous 5 years, I had planned several Marketing events for the Club and attended many more. I knew well the positive ROI in committing to plan and attend events was clearly beneficial for new insights and to deepen relationships with alumni and speakers. After some procrastination and some job leads fizzled out, I plunged into staging an event on social media marketing. The topic was a blind spot for me at the time, and I enlisted a star moderator who heads social agency Renegade, and 3 perfect panelists on the subject … I plucked one from Whole Foods after seeing her featured in AdWeek; another was a willing Columbia alumnus in charge of social marketing at American Express; a 3rd came from E.L.F. cosmetics, who emerged on an all-in endorsement from our moderator. We found a sponsoring law firm, snappy visuals, and ample space & budget for 250 attendees.              
“Build it and they will come”, I thought. But, two weeks before the event, registration was really light. I feared crickets in a near empty room, disgruntled panelists, embarrassed moderator, etc. I decided to flood my social media channels, and promote the event to everyone I knew - work contacts, friends, and all the people I had been networking with … even the ones who snubbed me or didn’t return emails and phone calls.

Magically, the event ended up selling out. How’s that for social media marketing? There was a buzz, the moderator was energized, the panelists delivered genuine perspectives and insight that led to much Q&A, chatter afterward and, of course, tweeting. I met a few attendees and kept in touch with one of the panelists I had just met. Within 3 weeks of the event, 3 of the people I invited offered me immediate positions, and all were out of the blue. I accepted one at NPR and worked there for 7 years.

This is one example, but surely not the only one of how planning events and leaning into CBSACNY can elevate your profile and reinvigorate your career.

Tags:  Alumni  Careers  Membership 

Share |

Downloadable Summary Now Available for Artificial Intelligence Event held June 19, 2017

Posted By Cindy Rosenthal, Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Updated: Friday, August 18, 2017

CBSACNY Panel Tackles the Coming Explosion

of Artificial Intelligence in Business


ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI) has the potential to be a paradigm shift, broadly disrupting business in the next few years as much as the Internet did in the early 2000s and mobile communications has since 2010. That was the key takeaway message from a panel of experts at our “Artificial Intelligence in Business” program, held on June 19, 2017.  

Panelists:  Norman Niemer (UBS O’Connor); Bethany Hale (IBM/Watson Health)
Christian Jong (Opentopic);  Sebastian Wilner (Google);  Chandler Wilson (Walmart)

This fantastic and tightly focused program featured AI advocate-experts from top corporations working in the field, and a sell-out crowd, thanks to the organizational skills of CBSACNY’s Media and High-Tech Committee, chaired by Bonnie Halpern and Brad Jobling, both CBS graduates. Describing AI loosely as the ability of computers to “contextualize things and provide more actionable information”, moderator Norman Niemer, a graduate of Columbia’s School of Engineering with a master’s degree in Financial Engineering, led a broad and illuminating conversation that highlighted AI’s tremendous importance to different sectors of business, as well as outlining specific applications and challenges to implementation.

“We are transitioning, from a business perspective, from a mobile-first world of product design to one that is AI-first,” said Niemer, who leads a quantitative data science team at UBS O’Connor, the hedge fund unit of UBS. In his leadership of AI innovation initiatives at UBS, Niemer has observed that the key to corporate success in such a ‘smart’ environment is having a data strategy-- that is, plans for collecting, storing, cleaning and analyzing enormous reams of data. AI uses big data and machine learning (ML) as essential tools, but goes further as “the glue that holds those together and gets actionable results out of all that data,” he said. ML, in contrast, is a subset of AI, in which computers use algorithms to harness data sets and learn from them.

Panelists defined AI as machine intelligence that analyzes unfathomably huge amounts of data to identify patterns and predict outcomes, making continual adjustments based on the input of new data according to rules created by the system itself, based on the input of new data. Bethany Hale, a CBS graduate who is Chief of Staff for the Global Healthcare and Life Sciences industry team at IBM, which includes Watson Health, the company’s most high-profile AI initiative, explained that a cognitive computer can process both structured and unstructured data, derive meaning from the data it is analyzing, and learns iteratively from feedback. That is what drives its ability to “think”.

AI can improve operating efficiency and provide new understanding of customer insights, which are central to success in sales, panelists said. Moreover, its adoption into strategic decision making is becoming a critical competitive advantage in business, as traditional market analysis is no longer a differentiator and as many “soft” functions such as IR, communications and strategic planning, can be quantified and thus incorporated into an AI-driven operating environment.  (more...)

For the full summary, see the attached downloadable document.

Download File (PDF)

 Attached Thumbnails:

 Attached Files:

Tags:  Artificial Intelligence 

Share |

Why You Should Join Columbia Business School Alumni Club of New York

Posted By Xenia Razinski, Thursday, August 18, 2016

Xenia Razinski  Columbia Business School Class of 2015 shares her experiences on why she joined CBSACNY.



For those of you deciding on whether you should join the Columbia Business School Alumni Club of New York, my advice is to you is JOIN.

My experience at Columbia Business School was outstanding in every way and I was looking for a friendly & supportive community way to continue that. I found it at the Columbia Business School Alumni Club of New York.


  • CBSACNY opened doors to a whole new network of people from different professions ages and experience. At the events I find it fascinating to speak with others about their professional experiences. Some conversations I had led to business follow-ups. Several people I met became friends
  • The organization holds dozens of panels and meetings covering virtually every professional field, industry, and social interest. Meet people like Paul Eastman the CEO of advertising giant JWT, speak to Wall Street business authors like Charles Cohan, and hear from real estate experts like Jonathan J. Miller. You get industry insights and the opportunity to meet distinguished executives at a fraction of the cost you would pay to attend similar events at major conferences.
  • Committees, the driving force behind the events, are based on a wide range of business fields providing an opportunity to work closely with people of similar interests and to forge new professional relationships.

I’m a big fan & could go on and on, but I don’t need to. You can find out yourself by joining today.




Tags:  membership 

Share |
PermalinkComments (2)
Get in Touch

Membership Software Powered by YourMembership  ::  Legal