New AI investment fund links radiologists, start-ups

By Erik L. Ridley, AuntMinnie staff writer

November 21, 2018 -- Two radiologists have launched a new investment fund that aims to bring together radiologists and artificial intelligence (AI) start-ups. With the fund -- called Bold Brain Ventures -- radiologists can both invest in and help develop AI technologies, while AI firms gain access to financial capital and domain expertise.

Radiologists will be the key investors, managers, and advisors in the fund, which plans to invest in a variety of companies developing radiology AI software, according to Bold Brain Ventures co-founders Dr. Tomislav Deur and Dr. Robin Prasad. Deur and Prasad are radiologists at a community hospital in Pennsylvania and have worked together for more than 20 years.

"In the aggregate, if we come together as doctors, we can help in dollars, be distribution channels, and help facilitate access to data," Prasad told AuntMinnie.com. "We can really be stewards of quality and make sure that everything is developed in a responsible fashion going forward."

Dr. Tomislav Deur and Dr. Robin Prasad
Dr. Robin Prasad (left) and Dr. Tomislav Deur (right), co-founders of Bold Brian Ventures.

Bold Brain Ventures is targeting a fund size of $25 million, with a first closing of $1 million and a maximum size of $100 million. The fund is capped at 99 investors to comply with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations.

The company believes that investing in a variety of companies is more likely to yield profitable outcomes and be less risky than investing in a single venture. In addition to radiologists, the fund will also welcome investments from high net-worth individuals, angel investors, financial institutions, and venture capitalists.

Bold Brain Ventures has signed on a number of advisors, including Dr. Paul Berger, founder of NightHawk Radiology Services; Dr. Yvonne Lui, associate chair of artificial intelligence in NYU Langone Medical Center's department of radiology; Joe Marks, PhD, executive director of the Carnegie Mellon University Center for Machine Learning and Health; Dr. Mark Weiss, president of Radiology Business Solutions; and Kelly Szejko, president of the Pittsburgh Venture Capital Association.

The fund will formally make its debut at the upcoming RSNA 2018 meeting in Chicago and is accepting investments. Potential investors can register at the fund's online portal to get more information.

"What we're trying to do at the core of Bold Brain Ventures is to remove that sense of fear [for radiologists over AI] and allow us to recognize that this might represent a renaissance in radiology in a way that's really profound," Deur said. "[We want to help radiologists] realize that this is something that we need to collectively be involved in to put our meaningful collective domain experience into it and derive the benefits for patient care."


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