Bill Marvin, 42, of Haverford, a Penn graduate, is president, CEO and founder of InstaMed, a health-care-payments firm at 19th Street and JFK Boulevard. The company’s single, integrated platform simplifies the health-care-payment process for more than 400 hospitals, 60,000 clinics and medical practices and 100 billing services. It connects to 3,000 payers and integrates with 50 practice-management systems.
Q: How did you come up with the idea for InstaMed?
A: In late 2004, it started as a way to process credit cards, debit cards, checks and electronic-funds-transfer transactions; to transmit electronic claims and remittances, as well as eligibility and health-care info.
Q: How about startup money?
A: Initially we got $800,000. We had money from angels here and on the West Coast, plus investments from Ben Franklin Tech Partners and Josh Kopelman.
Q: How’s the biz model work?
A: InstaMed is the PayPal of health care. We let providers collect more money, get paid faster and reduce time and costs to collect. Our platform lets payers cut settlement and disbursement costs with electronic payments and lets patients set up plans and make payments from a bank account or with a credit card.
Q: How is InstaMed reducing health-care costs?
A: We eliminate adminstrative costs – postage, phone calls, paperwork and faxes – which account for more than $200 billion a year. That makes information and money flow more seamlessly. Every electronic transaction – we’ll do 250 million of them this year – saves from 25 cents to a couple bucks.
Q: What’s your fee?
A: We live off dimes and quarters.
Q: What distinguishes InstaMed from others in this space?
A: We’re the only platform certified at the highest levels for payment processing and HIPAA-transaction processing.
Q: What’s been the biggest challenge in growing the business?
A: We had to invest in security and compliance procedures before doing transactions. We built a bicoastal cloud infrastructure that we manage. There are mirrored data centers here and in Southern California. If a weather event or power outage occurs on one coast, we can process on the other and there’s no downtime.
Q: How much did that cost?
A: It cost about $10 million to build and then a couple million annually to maintain and upgrade it.
Q: Who are some customers?
A: UnitedHealthcare. Also large hospitals here: HUP, Jefferson, Chester County Hospital.
Q: How many employees?
A: 100. Sixty-five are based here; most of the rest are technicians in Newport Beach, Calif.
Q: How big a business is this?
A: We don’t publicly disclose revenues. We did more than $10 million in 2011 and we’re on target for more than $20 million this year.