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Start-up generation

Antoni Riu

Managing Director, Galgo Medical

Antoni studied telecommunications engineering and has always been interested in business, consulting and strategy. His professional career has been marked by change, starting at Atos Origin, then the UOC –managing their research center–, PAU Education and Pompeu Fabra University (UPF). It was at the UPF where he met the other co-founders of Galgo Medical.

Antoni Riu "Companies don’t shut down due to a lack of ideas, but due to a lack of money”



Galgo Medical, a start-up from Pompeu Fabra University, develops medical imaging software for diagnostics, to plan surgery to treat cardiac arrhythmia and implant brain stents, and to predict a patient’s risk of broken bones due to osteoporosis. Galgo Medical, headed up by Antoni Riu, has created advanced, innovative solutions in its just three years of history, with its own software development platform and working closely with doctors and the medical industry.


Why did you want to be an entrepreneur?

I always wanted to start up a company. I tried before but the idea didn’t come together. Galgo Medical arose from the need to continue the work on issues and projects we had been doing at the UPF. This time I think it moved forward thanks to the efforts of all the co-founders, as we believe we’ll be successful.

What is the most important strategic decision you’ve made so far?

I would say that so far we’ve been following the best practices of how to launch a start-up and haven’t had to make any decisive decisions yet. What we’ve done has been to implement the best practices by the book, and that hasn’t always been easy. For example, we’ve had to cost costs as much as possible –which means taking a pay cut-, apply for all the public grants possible, open up shareholding to the doctors we worked with –Josep Brugada, Lluís Mont and Antonio Berruezo–, approach venture capital firms –Inveready– and discover that we’re the new kids on the block in an industry that’s been around for years!

What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?

To keep an eye on cash flow. Companies don’t shut down due to a lack of ideas, but due to a lack of money. You have to make sure the company will have enough money to carry on at least one more month and give the products developed a chance to find their place in the market. Planning, managing and controlling cash flow is a full-time job. I never would have thought it.

And now what? What milestones do you want to achieve in the short term?

Our business model at Galgo Medical is based on licensing technology and products to medical device and imaging companies in exchange for royalties. Our first product is on the market (osteoporosis) and the most important milestone for 2016 is to complete the clinical validations underway at twenty hospitals in Europe, USA and Asia.


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