MedTech Innovator Names Forest Devices as 2019 Global Competition Winner at The MedTech Conference


Startup Receives $350K Grand Prize for Portable Device to Triage Patients to Proper Stroke Centers

LOS ANGELES & BOSTONMedTech Innovator, the premier nonprofit startup accelerator in the medical technology industry, today announced Forest Devices as the winner of its 2019 Global Competition. The winning company was determined by a live audience vote on Sept. 24 at The MedTech Conference, powered by AdvaMed, in Boston.

Forest Devices, a medical technology startup based in Pittsburgh is developing a portable device that uses electroencephalogram monitoring and machine learning to diagnose large vessel occlusions and other stroke subtypes, enabling first responders to triage patients to proper stroke centers.

“It is an incredible honor to be recognized by the medtech community, especially given the other fantastic finalists in the competition,” said Matt Kesinger, CEO of Forest Devices. “The funding will support us in bringing our game-changing technology to market. The MedTech Innovator program has been fantastic and provided us with invaluable mentorship and support.”

Selected by an audience vote from a pool of nearly 800 early-stage medtech companies, Forest Devices was awarded the $350,000 grand prize to advance its business goals and mission to improve future health outcomes. The company has also been awarded an AdvaMed membership and will be profiled in the MedTech Strategist. Flosonics MedicalKoyaOncoRes, and Venari Medical were runners-up and received a prize of $25,000 as finalists in the MedTech Innovator Accelerator program.

“MedTech Innovator aims to support and advance innovative entrepreneurs who are developing cutting-edge medical technologies to address unmet needs in healthcare and improve the lives of patients,” said Paul Grand, CEO of MedTech Innovator. “We are pleased to see Forest Devices recognized as the 2019 winner for its important work and we look forward to their continued success in advancing healthcare for stroke patients.”

Forest Devices participated in the MedTech Innovator 2019 Accelerator program, which provides emerging-growth companies with in-depth, customized mentorship from key leaders in the medtech industry, exclusive networking opportunities, virtual and in-person workshops, and pitching sessions with investors, manufacturers, providers, and customers.

Currently in its seventh year, the MedTech Innovator competition awarded over $500K in cash prizes and in-kind awards. Participating companies gained increasing amounts of exposure to industry leaders through online application reviews, in-person pitch sessions, and audience competitions at two conferences.

Judges of the 2019 final competition included Christos Monovoukas, Global Leader, Mergers and Acquisitions / Business Development, Olympus; Jennifer Kozak, VP, New Business Development, Johnson & Johnson; Heather Walsh, Director, External Innovation, Baxter International; Sean Coyer, Leader, Digital Health Innovations and Ventures, Gore Innovation Center.

“It is great to see the global nature of this competition as demonstrated by the five finalists. We continue to be impressed with the companies that participate in MedTech Innovator,” said Susan Morano, Vice President, Business Development for the Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies. “We congratulate Forest Devices for winning this year’s competition and their role in bringing innovative new solutions to patients.”

During the plenary session, MedTech Innovator also announced winners of the incubator space awards. Avisi Technologies and Respirix each received the JLABS Award, valued at $25,000. Patch’d received the Gore Innovation Center Award, which provides usage of the Gore Innovation Center Space and Lab for three months.

MedTech Innovator is supported by founding sponsors Johnson & Johnson and RCT Ventures, and annual program sponsors include Baxter, Amgen, NIPRO Medical Corp., Olympus Medical Systems Group, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., BTG, Fujikura Ltd., HOYA Corp., Maxim Integrated Ventures, Alira Health, EdgeOne Medical, Experien Group, Greenlight Guru, Proxima Clinical Research, Westwood & Wilshire, and Ximedica. The organization’s industry partners include AdvaMed, Health+Commerce, MedTech Strategist, and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

About MedTech Innovator

Based in Los Angeles, Calif., MedTech Innovator is the premier nonprofit startup accelerator in the medical technology industry. Its mission is to improve the lives of patients by accelerating the growth of companies that are transforming the healthcare system. MedTech Innovator matches healthcare industry leaders with innovative early-stage and emerging growth medtech companies for mentorship and support. For more information about MedTech Innovator, visit and follow @MedTechAwards on Twitter. To receive industry insights and highlights about MedTech Innovator’s current and alumni participant companies, subscribe to our monthly newsletter.


Lara Lingenbrink