Rock Boston: AgaMatrix Tells their Story

By Nick Martinez

Last Thursday, Sridhar Iyengar, CTO and Founder of AgaMatrix visited Rock Boston.  AgaMatrix’s ground breaking glucose sensor has revolutionized the industry through its accuracy and ease of use.  Iyengar shared the story of AgaMatrix’s humble beginnings with the Rock Boston class.  The company’s early headquarters was a one-bedroom apartment with only a desk and two chairs, and it was a long road to realizing their dream that included homemade clean rooms built out of shower curtains and trips to Australia to conduct their first testing with live blood.

Iyengar presented AgaMatrix’s newest product and then handed the floor over to Tim Golnik, Senior Manager of Products at AgaMatrix, and Tom Schady, Director of Software Engineering.  They discussed the challenges  of making the iBGStar a reality, including Apple’s concerns regarding the FDA and use of the iPhone as a medical device, as well as those design innovations that enabled iBGStar to be approved as the first medical device to be directly connected to the iPhone.

AgaMatrix visit left the Boston teams with some key takeaways:

  • Align expectations amongst founders and early employees: Iyengar and his co-founder Sonny Vu actually signed a document that set expectations for each other, including getting dressed for work in their home office
  • Be willing to meet the resources where they exist: AgaMatrix pitched their first investor in Monaco and sent a team to Australia, the only place with a cheap lab bench, to run initial testing
  • Adapt the business model relentlessly until you find the right fit: AgaMatrix started out trying to create their own diabetic strips and eventually pivoted to focus on creating highly accurate meters instead