Three years ago, Eric Lefkofsky combined his expertise as an entrepreneur and knowledge in the technology industry to co-found Tempus, a new Chicago startup company. From first-hand experience, Eric learned that healthcare databases were small and disorganized. Having gained the expertise from he’s dealing with other technology platforms, he knew this was the platform that was needed to open a wider door for the healthcare industry. So Lefkofsky and his longtime friend and business partner Brad Keywell created Tempus Labs. Staff and teams of technology, data-science and cancer research experts were hired. Partnerships were developed with academic medical centers and cancer physicians.
The mission of Tempus was to innovate the way physicians thought and treated cancer. Their goal was to provide physicians a learning library of data from previous cancer patients. Data that not only contains patient history but analyzed data of physicians diagnose and treatments. Data that enables physicians to deliver an integrated treatment program that would be beneficial to patient outcome. Lefkofsky confirmed that Tempus has partnered with the University of Chicago, Rush University and Northwestern, as well as, over 50 other research hospitals, Cancer Institutes/Centers and drug companies across the United States.
In this short time, Tempus has grown to become one of Chicago’s top ten health tech companies. And after the latest round of funding in March 2018 this new startup is now the latest of Chicago’s “unicorn” tech company. In September of last year Tempus raised $70 million, and everyone thought it was an impressive feat. In March of this year the startup raised $80 million, raising the company’s value to $1.1 billion, bringing it to it’s “unicorn” status. This increase of highly needed investment money will cause a rolling effect of more hires of high tech personnel, increased research and more data collecting, to physicians more acutely customizing cancer treatment care. For cancer patients, it means instead of just focusing on their cancer, treatments are focused on them as a whole being.
Tempus has already aggregated the largest clinical cancer database, putting structure into the unstructured digital medical records systems. As Tempus continues to develop a model for collecting critic medical data and proving it can be done, the future looks bright for patients with other hard to treat diseases.