Richard (Rick) Mills
As a general rule, the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information
In 1882, Ralph Waldo Emerson stated; “If a man has good corn or wood, or boards, or pigs, to sell, or can make better chairs or knives, crucibles or church organs, than anybody else, you will find a broad hard-beaten road to his house, though it be in the woods.”
In 1889, Emerson was credited with having said; “If a man can write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap than his neighbor ...”
Today the common phrasing is of course a metaphor about the power of innovation - ‘Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door.’
‘Better’ is a relative term. Every business, in every sector, is trying to build a ‘better mousetrap.’ Unfortunately, just like the over 4,000 patents for mouse traps, most are not better, they are just different in some small way.
As far as real mousetraps go there has never been, at least for most of us, a better way of killing mice then the spring loaded snap of the trap caused by a mouse trying to take the bait off a trigger plate. Sure, glue on a piece of cardboard might be an improvement for some who worry about getting their fingers caught (and don’t care about a swift humane kill), or maybe a ‘mouse house’ trap for those who get queasy and don’t want to see a dead rodent. But these are not big enough changes to want to make the majority of us change from the existing, perfectly capable technology.
Most often those who claim to have invented the better mousetrap, real or metaphorically speaking, haven’t - there just isn’t enough of a technological change to force consumers, businesses or institutions to want to or need to make a change. Call it incremental technology looking for a market.
The opposite end of the scale would be a change so great, a technological change so much more efficient, so much more attractive a switch is made without question – from 8-tracks to cassettes, to CDs. From black and white TV to color. From bulky poor quality movies on VHS tapes to slim, lightweight high quality optics on DVD’s. And of course programmable TVs with high def (and movies on demand) came along and kicked the crap out of the DVD market. These examples are all innovations that built upon an existing technology and truly created better mousetraps that were universally accepted as such.
Failing to create a clear competitive advantage, doing almost exactly the same thing as your competition, differentiating yourself by only a small tweak to the existing dominate market share technology is no way to succeed or even survive in business.
When you hear about a company touting ‘it’s better mousetrap’ ask yourself:
Better for who - do people really need or want a better mousetrap? Is this new mousetraps market growing, or shrinking?
Imagin Medical’s (CSE: IME) (OTC PINK: IMEXF) Ultrasensitive i/Blue Cancer Imaging System is going to radically improve physicians ability to visualize (detect) cancer.
IME’s technology is estimated to increase sensitivity to an estimated 5 orders of magnitude (100,000 x) more than white light alone.
In many instances the early detection and assessment of cancer relies on the accuracy of imaging technology via endoscopes. Conventional endoscopes use white light and produce less-than-adequate images to view during surgical procedures that can result in misdiagnosis or incomplete removal of cancer cells, leading to recurrence. Chemical imaging agents improve the quality of the image and the ability to differentiate healthy cells from cancerous, yet they require a one-hour prep time which can be logistically impractical and costly for the Operating Room.
Imagin Medical is developing the i/Blue™ Imaging System to help detect cancer and reduce its recurrence by dramatically improving the urologist’s ability to visualize, identify and remove cancerous cells. This advanced combination of optical/light sensor technology, white light and near-infrared fluorescence delivers superior images in less than 15 minutes vs. the one hour required by conventional systems. The time savings will increase the efficiency of the Operating Room and reduce healthcare costs by potentially enabling the procedure to be performed in the less expensive physician’s office for follow-up exams.
Additionally, physicians using today’s standard blue light need to switch back and forth between the white light and blue light images, which is not necessary with the i/Blue Imaging System that blends both lights into one image.
James Hutchens, CEO. Jim is a proven entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience in general and marketing management in the medical device industry. As the founder and CEO of Microsurge Inc., a venture-backed, minimally invasive surgery company, he assembled a management team, guided the company’s products through the regulatory process, hired a sales and marketing team, drove revenues to an annual run rate of over $10 million and sold the company. As the founder and CEO of Choice Therapeutics, an advanced wound care company, Mr. Hutchens implemented similar tactics and with revenue of $2 million sold the company to Alliqua Biomedical a NASDAQ list company. At Microvasive Endoscopy, a division of Boston Scientific, revenues rose from $300,000 to over $20 million during his tenure as Vice President, Marketing and Sales.
Thom McMahon, Director of Sales. Thom worked at Karl Storz for over 25 years, and was Storz’ #1 sales rep for 10 years. With over 35 years in the business, he is on first-name basis with most of the leading urologists in the Northeast. His experience covers the gynecology, laparoscopic surgery, GI endoscopy, wound care, cardiology, urinary incontinence and regenerative technologies markets.
Michael G. Vergano, Vice President Operations - Michael has been president of The Harvest Group Inc. since 1998, where he has provided project management, product development, packaging, quality systems, operations, manufacturing engineering, and system/process design and validation services for start-ups as well as major medical corporations. His medical device experience includes the gynecology, laparoscopic surgery, GI endoscopy, dental imaging and implants, wound care, cardiology, urinary incontinence and orthobiologic regenerative technologies markets.
Stephen Ruggles, Dir. of Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs. Steve has over 30 years of experience in domestic and international regulatory affairs, operations management, manufacturing quality assurance, R&D, and supply chain management for early stage companies and large multinationals. As Director of QA / RA for Cambridge Endoscopic Devices, Mr. Ruggles led the effort to earn and maintain ISO 13485 registration, CE Mark, and compliance with Japan’s jPAL. Prior to Cambridge Endo, he served eight years at Becton Dickinson as a Supply Chain Quality Engineer, R&D Quality Engineer, Quality Manager and Regulatory Compliance Manager.
Ken Daignault has almost 30 years’ experience in the medical device field, with an emphasis in urology. He has held senior level management positions in major medical device companies, most recently with Boston Scientific as Director of R& D, Urology. He has also held positions at Kendall Healthcare (now Covidien) and CR Bard, one of the world’s largest urology companies. Ken has been involved in all aspects of the medical device business, from product development and the design of protocols and procedures for bench and animal pre-clinical testing, to building long-term strategies for multiple-product portfolios at various stages of development. Ken has strong relationships within the urology field and with key medical institutions, as well as a track record of bringing products from concept through successful product launch.
Dr. Stavros G. Demos, Technical Scientific Advisor. A prolific inventor and scholar, Dr. Demos is a laser materials expert. Companies using his technologies include Muse Microscopy, Near Infrared Imaging, and Biosense/Webster. He holds 20 patents and has published more than 115 scholarly journal articles. He is the original inventor of the i/Blue system and is continuing to work with Imagin in developing the technology. Imagin has forged an agreement with UC Davis and the University of Rochester Laboratory for Laser Energetics where Dr. Demos will continue to support Imagin’s development team through clinical evaluations and FDA submittal.
Dr. Ralph deVere White, Medical Advisor. One of the world’s leading authorities on bladder cancer, Dr. deVere White is the author of more than 300 peer-reviewed scientific articles. Dr. deVere White is the director of the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center and a professor of urology at the university. He will actively consult with the Imagin team as questions arise about bladder cancer.
Dr. Edward Messing, Chief of Urology at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Dr. Messing is a renowned expert in the diagnosis and treatment of cancers of the bladder, prostate, kidney, and other genitourinary organs. He has conducted extensive research in the basic biology of bladder and prostate cancers and has been the principal investigator on numerous clinical studies for the detection, prevention and treatment of genitourinary cancers. Dr. Messing received his M.D. degree from New York University, performed his surgery training at NYU-Bellevue Hospital and his Urology Residency at Stanford University. He was Director of the Urologic Oncology Program at the University of Wisconsin and assumed his current position at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in September 1995.
Investor Check list
- Is there a major technological breakthrough that will change the standard of care in a market?
- Is there a very large patient population that is significantly underserved and will Imagin’s iblue technology sufficiently address it?
- Does IME’s technology so significantly change the economic picture of treating a particular disease that payers will have almost no choice but to cover it once approved?
- Does iblue reduce the costs of caring for the average patient? Payers, be they private or public, will be behind the diagnostics if companies can prove that the tests are effective and that they save time, money and patients' lives.
- Will iblue get FDA approval?
- Has Imagin’s management team successfully brought other products to market in previous careers?
Imagin Medical CSE:IME is an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of a start up business, one having built a truly better ‘mousetrap’ – a technology that is a far superior product then the standard of care currently employed in an almost US$50bil global endoscope market.
Imagin Medical needs to be on all our radar screens. Is it on yours?
If not, maybe it should be.
Richard (Rick) Mills
Richard lives with his family on a 160 acre ranch in northern British Columbia. He invests in the resource and biotechnology/pharmaceutical sectors and is the owner of Aheadoftheherd.com.
Legal Notice / Disclaimer
This document is not and should not be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to purchase or subscribe for any investment.
Richard Mills has based this document on information obtained from sources he believes to be reliable but which has not been independently verified.
Richard Mills makes no guarantee, representation or warranty and accepts no responsibility or liability as to its accuracy or completeness. Expressions of opinion are those of Richard Mills only and are subject to change without notice. Richard Mills assumes no warranty, liability or guarantee for the current relevance, correctness or completeness of any information provided within this Report and will not be held liable for the consequence of reliance upon any opinion or statement contained herein or any omission.
Furthermore, I, Richard Mills, assume no liability for any direct or indirect loss or damage or, in particular, for lost profit, which you may incur as a result of the use and existence of the information provided within this Report.
Richard owns shares of Imagin Medical CSE: IME, OTC PINK: IMEXF