Signify Premium Insight: HeartFlow’s Deal that Failed to Rise
Published: February 24, 2022
Assessing the value of something is a notoriously difficult task. One famous case covered by the Wall Street Journal regarded the pricing strategy of the Williams-Sonoma company which had launched its first at-home bread making machine. This device retailed for $275, but customers weren’t interested, and sales were disappointing. Instead of assuming the device was priced too highly for consumers and lowering it accordingly, at the suggestion of a marketing firm, the company brought out a second, similar model for the inflated price of $415. Although the original model hadn’t changed, the introduction of the second, more expensive model made the original device look like a bargain by comparison, and its sales doubled. Without the second product, consumers were unable to contextualise the price of the first.
HeartFlow is likely to have fallen foul of similar psychology. When HeartFlow announced that it was listing, it was set to become medical imaging AI’s first double unicorn. More pertinently it was set to become one of the first medical imaging AI vendors outside of China which had