In this fun and insightful conversation with the co-founder and co-owner of Cabiomede (Instagram: @CabiomedeVet), I learned a lot more about Mateusz Pawlik, who is behind many of the incredible veterinary 3D printing products for both surgical plannings and for educational purposes. As a young entrepreneur, Mateusz shared with us his earlier failures right out of school, later, business pivots, and future outlook on healthcare 3D printing, not just for veterinary medicine but also for human medicine. We discussed many challenges facing the industry, in particular, how to encourage healthcare providers to adopt a new way of practice and thinking. Mateusz will also be speaking at the upcoming 3D Printing for Animals webinar.
Fun excerpts from the interview:
Jenny: It’s quite interesting that you guys came out of school just decided on funding and companies instead of looking for a job. I mean, there’s a huge amount of risk here, because may not even be able to put food on the table. Because, you know, it’s not like you have worked for 10 years and saved up and how did you make that decision and decide that risk was worth it?
Mateusz: Actually, if I would have a second chance, would I do the same? I’m not so sure if I would go this way.
Because we did not have much experience in the market, we didn’t have any savings of 10 years working in a corporation or something like that. So we were young, and stupid, probably. But it was like, oh, let’s just make the company. Everyone will buy from us, everyone will want our products. And we will manage it somehow. The reality was not so colorful, I might say because, as I said, we have started in four co-founders. And after two years, we had a little breakage in the company. So two co-founders have left us. But those two better ones are still developing Carbiomed.
So from that time, I think it was quite important to break up with the other two co-founders and go in our own direction. And from that time, we have developed our production company in quite a good direction. Now we are a six-people company with a lot of work to do. We are the 10 people, including the contractors.
And some time ago, I’ve been listening to a Guy Kawasaki webinar when he was talking about 10 biggest mistakes made by startups. So we made all of them. So he was telling me about projections of financing, scaling, multiplying numbers, etc, etc., we make every single mistake, but we are still alive, and we are still in the market. We are developing. I think those mistakes were needed to make us stronger.
Jenny: Show us a few fun examples!
Mateusz (see video): I would like to start with probably the most interesting part because people are thinking veterinary medicine is a lower level of medicine…But it’s completely opposite. Simply simple case. This is a copy of an eight-week-old cat who has a broken pelvic bone and digestive problems. The smallest one, the weight of such a patient is less than one kilogram. So our smallest patients are smaller than newborns. The typical newborn is like 3.5 kilos, so it’s a Yorkshire Terrier. Our patients are like newborns. The biggest patient was more than 80 kilos, for example. So we have from time to time difference of 100 times in weight. The smallest one is one kilogram, the biggest one is 100 kilos.
Veterinary medicine is pretty demanding. It’s, it’s not easy. Every single time you have a different dog species… We have a different organism to treat with different needs. It’s not like human medicine where a typical person is 75 kilos. Every single time our patient is from one through to 100 (kilos).
About our guest this week:
Graduate of Biomedical Engineering at the Silesian University of Technology in Poland. He gained his experience working in international companies in the medical industry as a product engineer and continuous development manager. Co-owner of CABIOMEDE – company providing R&D services in medical engineering area and Pets Analytics – startup developing an innovative solution in the field of animal health monitoring.
Operations Manager responsible for new products and technology development – presurgical models, custom made surgical guides and implants, polymeric and metal spine and joint implants for animals. Together with CABIOMEDE team developed more than 500 patient’s cases on a basis of Computed Tomography. His biggest project was related to create veterinary surgical workshop models – full canine and feline fractures database according to AOVet classification.