Mary Furlong & Associates Boomer/Senior Market Report
Investing in the Longevity Market
May 2015 – Vol. 9, No.1
Now in its 12th year, the Silicon Valley Boomer Venture Summit is only one month away. This event brings together venture capitalists, angel investors, technology and senior housing executives, thought leaders, entrepreneurs, and mavericks! What do they all have in common—an interest in understanding the wants and needs of boomers, seniors, and caregivers as they navigate the trillion dollar longevity economy. These are the investors who are making active investments in the boomer and health care space. They include: Lynn Chou, Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers; John Hopper, Managing Director, Link-age Ventures; Scott Smith, founder and Managing Partner, Viant Group; Gavin Teo, Principal, Comcast Ventures; and Jeff Lee, Principal, DCM Ventures. Recently the Ziegler Link-age Fund announced investments in Carelinx, a platform that helps families find a caregiver; Caremerge, a cloud-based care coordination platform; and Breezie, a London Based company that has a personalized system that helps isolated seniors stay connected. The investors will be discussing their priorities for investment in this market. There is a $10,000 prize and a dinner for finalists, judges, and corporate sponsors at the Rosewood Sand Hill Hotel in Menlo Park. Much of the wealth creation in Silicon Valley comes from this neighborhood.
The conference also brings together thought leaders to share the latest trends about the market. According to Oxford Economics The Longevity Economy, “A powerful new force is changing the face of America, composed of 106 million people responsible for at least $7.1 trillion in annual economic activity —a figure that is expected to reach well over $13.5 trillion in real terms by 2032.” No one has a better sense of the power of the trillion dollar market opportunity than AARP Senior Vice President for Thought Leadership, Jody Holtzman. Jody will provide a keynote on the longevity marketplace and health innovation. He has also authored the article “Lessons of a New Investor – Listen to the Market, Build the Ecosystem, Reap the Rewards” for VCR, the National Venture Capital Association newsletter. Looking at how the grandparent market and multigenerational housing will be a huge opportunity in the future, will be Lori Bitter, author of the Grandparent Economy and Kim Ashbaugh, Director of Next Gen Brand Management of Lennar. According to Lori, grandparenting is a life stage that lasts throughout the boomers’ lives (one in three boomers are currently grandparents). It is often a very aspirational life stage—one that brings the "dessert of life" in grandchildren but also has an impact on how boomers spend and where and how they live. The new multigenerational housing model is one of the most exciting developments that I have seen in years. You can find models on the Lennar website and learn about this fast growing trend. This innovation works across cultures and also provides a solution for families who are empty nesters and want to help out with grandchildren and caregiving.
There are also seasoned and accomplished business executives sharing their vision and their strategy for making their business work. Technology executive and CEO of GreatCall, David Inns, is leading off the day. He will be introducing three diverse mavericks who surf the longevity, digital, and ocean waves—leaders who have developed the skills to build and leverage a business. Included in this group is talented boomer, Jeff Clark, co-founder of the Mavericks Surf Venture who shares his powerful story of building an experience and a brand around surfing for the past 40 years.
Our keynote speaker, Norman Lear, creator of All in the Family, a TV show that engaged over 60 million people when the boomers were young, will share insights from his life story. He will be interviewed by MSNBC network anchor, Alex Witt. There will also be lessons shared by the latest in new media and online marketplaces. (More on this next time.)
Silicon Valley is also hosting Lunch-and-Learn tables where you can pitch an idea to an angel or venture investor. You can sign up for a table to learn skills in how to drive leads into senior housing, how to use Facebook to market, and how to build a strategy to market your business idea.
What’s on my bookshelf: Zero to One by Peter Thiel
The Silicon Valley Boomer Venture Summit would not be possible without the support of our generous sponsors:
AARP Real Possibilities
The Business of Aging
SDI Susan Davis International
VNA Health Group
The Sequoias San Francisco
First Republic Bank