Insight Bite: Oracle to put Clinical Trials on the Cloud with goBalto Acquisition

Oracle have announced the purchase of goBalto, a San Francisco firm that develops software to speed up the process of organising clinical trials for new drugs. Though terms of the deal were not disclosed, goBalto was last valued at $70 million in a 2015 funding round.

GoBalto – named after the famous medicine-transporting husky – have made a name for themselves by helping drug companies quickly coordinate clinical trials across different sites. This circumvents the otherwise complex logistical process of manually arranging the trials, which according to a report by the Tufts Centre for the Study of Drug Development, can take up up to six months. GoBalto claim that their software can shave 30 to 40 percent off the time needed.

In a letter to customers, Oracle executive Steve Rosenberg said that goBalto’s tools will be integrated with Oracle’s existing health science platform, which is used to create clinical trials, execute them, collect data, and manage safety.

“Clinical trial site selection and activation is one of the most manual and time-consuming processes for our customers,” said Steve Rosenberg, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Oracle Health Sciences Global Business Unit. “Oracle Health Sciences is designed to provide the industry with the best end-to-end clinical trial experience and the addition of goBalto will further allow our customers to remove another barrier from delivering treatments to patients faster.”

By joining forces, Oracle and goBalto hope to “provide the most complete end-to-end cloud platform dedicated to unifying action and accelerating results for the Life Sciences industry.”

Oracle have not made an acquisition in the healthcare sector since the purchase of Clear Trial in 2012, another provider of cloud-based clinical trial solutions. Since then, the Clinical Trial Management Systems (CTMS) market has continued to grow rapidly, and is expected to be worth 1.6 billion by 2025.

Within CTMS, cloud-based solutions are surging ahead, and their market share is only expected to get larger. This acquisition represents a way for Oracle to both improve their existing services, and capitalise on a market that continues to exhibit rapid growth.

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