Meet the Founders – Blumio

Blumio, a startup from the San Francisco Bay Area and participant in Batch 3, has developed a health sensor to measure a person’s blood pressure continuously without an inflatable cuff. We have talked to co-founder Catherine Liao about their founding story, their vision for the future and what triggered their decision to become part of Startup Creasphere.

Catherine, measuring blood pressure is a rather standardized process. How did you come up with the idea of creating a new approach for continuous blood pressure measurement and where do you stand with the solution today?

I met my co-founder Oliver when we were both working at WHO more than 16 years ago. When his mother-in-law suffered a stroke, he started researching for options that can be used to monitor her as she recovery – and came across the use of radar technology as a potential sensor for blood pressure monitoring. With that thesis, we built a team consisting of experts in radar, electrical and mechanical engineering, clinical research, and data science to tackle the development of a radar-based sensor to do just that. On the hardware side, we have been able to establish a partnership with Infineon where we utilise a next-generate radar chipset that they co-developed with Google. Another partner is CardieX, a 20-year old medical device company that pioneered the measurement of arterial stiffness and blood pressure. We are really proud of what we’ve achieved to-date: we’ve published multiple peer-reviewed scientific papers showing what our sensor is capable of, as well as a prototype showing blood pressure monitoring in action.

This sounds like a great start. Where do you envision Blumio in 10 years?

Blood pressure monitoring was a natural choice to get started with as the single best indicator of general health. Thinking forward, we want to revolutionize health monitoring by continuously measuring a variety of vital signs in a convenient, yet highly reliable way. I love the idea of our solution showing up in different patient monitoring products in the future. Today we’re used to hearing “Intel inside” for computers. My vision is that we’ll have “Blumio inside” for medical devices.

Coming from the San Francisco Bay Area, the origin of the global startup scene and accelerator programs, how would you rate your experience with Startup Creasphere so far?

I have already participated in different accelerator or mentor programs around the globe, ranging from hardware and health focused programs to female founder mentoring programs and startup competitions. I have not experienced major differences between programs in the US and Europe – all are aimed at giving founds an extra hand in building their company. However, I have to say that I have never encountered a program like Startup Creasphere that emphasises on real pilot projects and collaboration between a startup and a corporate. That is very unique and I really appreciate how focused and well-prepared our pilot owner was when we started our pilot program. I look very much forward to what we can achieve together within the four months batch time.


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