Innovative Due Diligence
If you’ve been doing something for twenty years and your goal is to keep doing it better, you can’t avoid looking back at your experience and deriving from it a set of principles. This is especially true if the venture is new at the outset, largely untested by anyone, which is how I found the field of biotechnology investing.
It helped that I had a medical degree. But what helped even more was the firm conviction that I did not know enough, could not know enough, because everything was so new. This gave me a heightened sense of alertness. Each venture was a learning experience in the truest sense.
Due diligence was the first thing that concerned us. We looked to leverage naturally occurring due diligence that had already taken place. We concentrated on products that already existed in the pipelines of pharmaceutical companies where they had earned their place but might be languishing in obscurity.
Determining which of these products had potential was the next due diligence step. For that, we turned to experts in each specific field of research and we offered them positions in a new venture. If we had confidence in their credentials and found them willing to bet their careers on a product, then that was our second due diligence indicator, and a powerful one.