How To Make Money Selling Personal Genomic Services

How To Make Money Selling Personal Genomic Services

by Dr. Hsien-Hsien Lei
Posted May 8, 2008 in Business of DNA

Given my limited knowledge of how to run a business (my sister’s the Harvard MBA of the family), I’d always thought having a bigger market is the key to success (as I alluded to in my previous post, Using Dispoable Income for Genetic Tests). macbook airThere is, of course, another way of increasing company profits as Steve Jobs demonstrated with Apple:

Apple’s stock has shot up more than 70% over the past year, thanks to Jobs’ strategy of focusing on his most profitable customers and coming up with new things to sell them—the ultra-thin MacBook Air most recently—rather than just chasing more market share. [emphasis added]

~The 2008 Time 100

So what does this mean for personal genomics companies? Perhaps Knome with its $350,000 genome sequencing service isn’t too far off the mark.

NB: If you’ve got an extra $2500 that you don’t know what to do with, check out my list of DNA services you can buy with $2500.



Related Posts:
Using Disposable Income for Genetic Tests...
Personal Genome Sequencing Company Knome Launches...
Eye on DNA Interview with Knome CEO Jorge Conde...
Patients and Doctors Should Work Together in the Genome Revolution...
What $2500 Can Buy in DNA Services...
Nanosphere DNA Test Using Gold Nanoparticles...
Personal Genome Results from 23andMe and deCODEme...

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Comment by Steven Murphy MD Subscribed to comments via email

You forgot to mention that the airbook, iphone, ipod, etc etc etc. are tremenduosly useful items……

BTW a good family history assessment from is less than 2500…..


How much less than 2500? ;) The HHS offers My Family Health Portrait to help people organize their family medical history for free.

Comment by Steven Murphy MD Subscribed to comments via email

A little bit less ;)

I happen to be in discussions with an excellent geneticist who helped develop that tool. It is a start…..Hopefully, we will have the next step shortly…

p.s. I thought you were going to be posting less ;)

(Comments wont nest below this level)

I didn’t post on Monday! But it was a Bank Holiday here in the UK. heh

A little secret…some of the posts were written in advance and scheduled for posting later.

Comment by TootingBecCommoner Subscribed to comments via email

hey Hsien – remember there are only three ways to increase revenue:

1. add new customers (let’s say 23andme for now)
2. sell more stuff to current customers (lets say 23andme down the road)
3. sell the same amount of stuff as before to whoever you can, but raise prices (doesn’t leave knome much wiggle room, really ….)

.. and they all have their upsides and downsides

TootingBecCommoner, Thanks for the comment! It’s pretty obvious I’m not a businesswoman, eh? *blush*

Comment by Dan

actually those items (iphone/ipod/macbook air) are far from necessities (all you need to do is go and read a few reviews of the macbook air to see how amazingly flawed it is in some people’s opinions, but they will all admit to wanting one anyway), apple has an amazing knack for selling you things you don’t necessarily need, but that you want. People covet apple branded products, many of their customers are typical early adopters, and likely the same kind of people who have a few thousand dollars to spend on some kind of personal genome service.

Dan, I want to learn the knack for selling people things they don’t need!

Comment by Steven Murphy MD Subscribed to comments via email

Now, Now……I said tremendously useful….not necessities. IMHO the only necessities are clean food and water. But I can do a lot of things with the iPhone, iMac, Airbook….etc…

We still have a long way to go for the SNP chip scans…..I hate calling them genomic services….b/c they are not.

Besides, the other products had prior markets. These services do not.

I don’t really covet apple branded things. But I do have a Nano…….


Comment by Dan

And Apple created the market for that Nano :)

Comment by Steven Murphy MD Subscribed to comments via email

Didn’t Sony create that market with Walkman????? A LONG, LONG, LONG time ago. My point does not have to do with the market. It has to do with the utility of the products….. Very tricky thing you are trying to do here. I have seen it on Canal Street and even in Times Square. They call it 3 card monty…



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