Friday Roundtable

How COVID-19 is Driving Venture Investments in Healthcare Innovation

Each Bioinsider Friday Roundtable is a moderated 1-hour discussion around a biomedical topic of paramount importance. In this informal setting, experts and opinion leaders from diverse backgrounds ranging from world-renowned scientists, policy makers, biotech and pharma executives and patient advocates come together to network, brainstorm, exchange ideas, and develop future collaborations. In these brainstorming sessions, important challenges to the field are confronted and actionable strategies are discovered and synthesized to be shared with all participants and broader scientific community. 

In keeping with the roundtable format and to ensure everyone has a voice, participation is limited to 15 people. Each is led by moderators along with several hand-picked experts and specialists. 

The remaining 10 seats are offered to the Bioinsider community on a first-come, first-served basis, for a nominal fee. Because it’s a small group, we encourage attendees to interact and participate, so plan on coming to the session with questions and ideas at the ready!

Who should attend: Venture Capitalists (VCs), Corporate Venture Capitalists (CVCs), Business     Strategists, Founders, CEOs and Entrepreneurs in healthcare and life sciences

Why you should attend:

  • VCs and CVCs:  Join in on discussions with other VCs/CVCs to get the latest industry trends, resources, and investment opportunities
  • Business Strategists: Exchange ideas on new innovations, business models and new markets to help shape the direction of your businesses
  • Founders, CEOs and Entrepreneurs: Connect with key investors and learn more about where healthcare investment is heading to optimize your products and services

Featured experts

Friday Roundtables

Friday, January 29, 2021

How COVID-19 is Driving Venture Investments in Healthcare Innovation

The schedule is in EST Time Zone. To check your local time, click here.

12:00 PM Organizer’s Opening Remarks

Emily Le, PhD, Founder & CEO, Bioinsider

12:05 PM Speed Networking Session 

Please come camera ready for effective speed networking! You will have a few minutes to interact 1 on 1 with your peers.

12:10 PM Roundtable Discussion: How COVID-19 is Driving Venture Investments in Innovation 

Co-Moderator: Eli Velasquez, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, Investors of Color Network (ICN)

Co-Moderator: Brittany Barreto, PhD, Co-Founder, Executive Director, and Podcast Host, FemTech Focus

  • What were your primary investments in innovation before the pandemic?
  • How has your investment thesis changed during the pandemic?
  • What are new innovations, business models, and markets you’re actively looking into?
  • What new players are you seeing emerge in health care investing?  
  • What does the healthcare industry look like in 10 years in the U.S.?


1:00 PM End of Friday Roundtable

Did you miss it? You can still find out what was discussed at this Friday Roundtable. Read here.

Meet Our Moderators

Eli Velasquez, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, Investors of Color Network (ICN)

Eli is co-Founder and Managing Partner of the Investors of Color Network, a national network of Black and Latinx accredited investors across the U.S. focused on closing the racial funding gap in early-stage capital.  In his prior role at VentureWell, he oversaw the U.S. State Dept. Global Investors Program.  He has assisted with training, supporting and launching new angel networks in Malaysia, Indonesia, Egypt, Vietnam, Mexico, and Colombia.  He also serves as a Board Member on the Angel Capital Association, Capital Advisor to the Stanford Latino Business Action Network, and US Senator for the World Business Angel Forum.  He is an investor in Portfolia’s Rising America Fund, Advisor to AccelHub Venture Partners and the Business Angel Minority Association (baMa).

Prior, he was the Director of Venture Development at Texas Tech University where he co-founded the Lubbock Angel Network, a group that has invested over $4M and seen four exits since its founding in 2015.  His efforts in Texas led to over $20M in funding for startups, entrepreneurship programs, and proof of concept funds.  Before that, Mr. Velasquez worked for The Boeing Company in southern California, initially within Boeing’s Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) group where he was assigned to develop the Delta Rockets.  In his last two years at Boeing, he worked as an Intellectual Property Consultant with Boeing’s Intellectual Property Business (IPB) unit. 

He obtained a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Boston University and his J.D. degree with an Intellectual Property Certificate from Whittier Law School.

Brittany Barreto, PhD, Co-Founder, Executive Director, and Podcast Host, FemTech Focus

Dr. Brittany Barreto is the unconventional serial entrepreneur that proves that anything is possible with hard work and heart. While finishing her PhD in genetics at Baylor College of Medicine, Brittany became the CEO and Co-Founder of the revolutionary dating app Pheramor. The ambitious venture was the first nationwide DNA-based dating app to hit the market, reaching an eager audience that resulted in 50% growth, month over month. Brittany was also successful in fundraising $1.3 million for her startup, her founder’s journey took a pivot three years later when she embarked on a new path as the Senior Venture Associate at Capital Factory, a notable innovation player in Texas. Under her leadership the Houston accelerator portfolio grew by an impressive 205%. It was also during this time that Brittany realized that Houston needed more former-founder mentors like herself to help usher in the next generation of Femtech startups. Dr. Brittany Barreto now has her sights on advancing the Femtech community through her latest world-changing venture – FemTech Focus.  You can connect with her on Instagram and Facebook @FemTechFocus or @DrBrittanyBarreto

If you want to sponsor our Friday Roundtables, please contact Emily Le at