Written by Shantanu Mittal

Market Networks have been studied and defined in great detail, most notably by James Currier of NFX Guild.  (pro-tip:  If you don’t know what a market network is, read James’ post before continuing on.)
Here at Bee Partners, we have been at the forefront of investing in market networks through early investments in companies like TradesyBuilding Connected, and Vacatia, and have even seen other marketplaces in our portfolio transition towards a more market-network like approach.

I was introduced to this concept when I first joined Bee and am fascinated by its power to help startups achieve scale so quickly.


But how do market networks get started in the first place? What changes can trigger the creation of a market network? The answer, in my opinion, is a change in the power dynamic between the buyer and seller creates the perfect ground for a market network.

This is an insight that became clearer  when I applied  the market network concept to the healthcare industry. The healthcare ecosystem is a complex network with payers, providers, patients and pharma companies. A lot of health IT investment has gone into improving the ease and efficiency of each of the individual stacks in the ecosystem. But a huge opportunity exists in new market networks that connect these stacks. Traditionally in the healthcare industry, power has been concentrated in the hands of providers and payers. However, with millennials focus on disease prevention and transparency of health plans, we are seeing a dramatic shift in the power dynamic towards a patient centric model.

Figure 1: Number of Registered Studies Over Time

Startups have already started to take advantage of this shift in power dynamic through new market network concepts that focus on the consumer. We are seeing new market networks to help patients find the right doctors and health plans. The focus is on consumer convenience and transparency.  Market networks have created tremendous value and this shift to a consumer driven healthcare model has only just begun. With new trends like Telehealth and democratization of genomic data, we can expect to see a continued evolution of market networks in healthcare.

Another major area of healthcare that is frequently overlooked in the health IT ecosystem is the drug development network. Here too we see a potential for market networks between pharma companies that develop new drugs and hospital sites that have the ability to conduct clinical trials. And recently, we are starting to see a change in the power dynamic in this network. The number of trials being conducted has gone up exponentially in the last 10 years (see Figure 1), but the number of trial sites has not increased to such a degree. This change in supply and demand has led to clinical trial sites now gaining more power; Florence Healthcare is in the process of capitalizing on this emerging opportunity. Florence started off as a workflow software tool for the clinical sites, but saw this change in power dynamic happening and soon evolved into a market network connecting clinical trial sites with pharma companies willing to sponsor trials.  Florence solves the biggest problems at the clinical edge of the network, and by freeing those bottlenecks, helps the sponsor side too.

Fence Healthcare recently announced a $1.7M raise from leading investors including Bee Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Dartmouth Angel Fund and FitBit VP Will Crawford. Since launching in January, usage of Florence’s SaaS tool has grown over 150% month over month.  Ahead of the funding, Florence secured agreements with some of the biggest institutions in drug and device development: UCSF, Mt. Sinai, and Sloan Kettering’s PCCTC Cancer Research Center.

We are excited about increasing our exposure to the healthcare industry through a market network, and are thrilled to be supporting Andres GarciaRyan Jones, and Michael Kassin, MD, and their team at Florence.  For more details on Florence’s recent success, click here, and if you’d like to connect with the Founders, please let us know!

Chris Corey

CMO Markethive





How I learned about market networks from James Currier, Nir Eyal, and the NFX Guild

I’m going to share with you how I came across a great group of Entrepreneurs called NFX Guild and the idea of Market Networks which unveiled Markethive. I must first tip my hat to this group of professionals whom I have yet to meet face to face.  This group of investors and pioneers in their chosen fields have no clue to the fact that they have changed my life forever.

I will first start with some members of the group. Mind you I have never met or even talked to any of the gentleman I am going to name in this post.

#1 on my list of members is

James Currier

Managing Partner, 
NFX Guild

James Currier published an article titled “From Social Networks To Market Networks”. Before reading his article I had never heard of James Currier or of the phrase Market Network. But James talked about how the past ten years were about social networks, however the next ten years are going to be about market networks.

He also believes that with social networks being a trillion-dollar industry in comparison market networks will dwarf them to become the very first quadrillion dollar industry. This is expected to be the single largest economic event in human history.

#2 on my list is

Nir Eyal


"Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products"

Hooked is a guide to building habit-forming technology, written for product managers, designers, marketers, and startup founders.

In his book Nir Eyal talks about the importance of having a technology that creates a habit for users to want to come back often enough until it becomes ingrained in their daily ritual. He goes on to write” Systems that improve with age are the sought after prizes as they retain growth and are considered monopolies, not commodities.”

Customer becomes more valuable to the company over time. He also states that if a company creates a unique product that can do this, then that company is poised to be very disruptive in the market.

So how is it that these two gentleman with respect to Market Networks and habit forming products come to have such a large impact on the life of someone they have never met?

The event happened because I have been working with Thomas Prendergast on a company called Markethive. Markethive is a full force market network with a full suite of tools for entrepreneurs to use for free.

(insert video)

It Is a fully functioning Market Network that navigates like Facebook with tools. IE:

  • a powerful blogging platform that integrates and improves the power of WordPress.
  • AAA+ rating with Iron Port. A 99.97% email deliverability to a customer’s inbox within 3-5 minutes
  • Completely customizable capture page
  • The capability of creating reach in the billions through other Markethive users subscribing to your blogs. If they subscribe one time to you it will automatically auto post to all of the social networks that they have attached to Markethive.
  • Completely integrated statistical tracking for all blog posts, profile pages, capture pages and capture page widgets.
  • All widgets have one click capture. I.e. Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Google+ and more.
  • Sophisticated marketing management and campaign execution.
  • A Powerfully integrated systems providing streamlined functionality and control.

With access to powerful marketing tools you can execute marketing campaigns that produce real results.

Almost as important as the tools themselves though, is the ability to keep all of your information and activities organized.

The features in this area allow you to accomplish everything you need to launch and manage professional level marketing campaigns.
There are different types of campaigns for different purposes and goals.
As a result there are a range of tools at your disposal:


  • Manage advertising vendor records.
  • Create advertising co-op's with groups of members.
  •  Establish tiny URLs for specialized use.
  •  Define sophisticated website rotators to distribute leads.
  •  Track websites on your asset map.
  •  Monitor and evaluate keyword terms.
  • Manage and verify Backlinks to your website

If you price all these services out it would be upwards of $500.00 per month and with other systems, they do not communicate with one another. Even if I do find a SaaS that can communicate with your auto responder as well as all your website it still doesn’t communicate and organize the blog post with all the social networks which is a major problem in our industry.  So Markethive solves this issue for many bloggers and internet marketers.

Markethive intergrades all of this so that it all works together and again provides all these tools for free. This is a far better system than most all options we have found excluding the price point. When you then add in the fact it is free, Markethive creates massive industry disruption while becoming a monopoly SaaS instead of a commodity SaaS.

Believe me we have scoured the internet and have actually done a comparison of the top seven lead nurturing systems that we could find. You can see our comparison here.





Mr. Prendergast started building Markethive four years ago and at the time he had no Idea that he was creating this massive Market Network that we believe will be the 400lb gorilla of our time in the new emerging niche on the internet Market Networks. 

Chris Corey 

CMO Markethive