IBJNews

Orbis Education lands $8 million in venture capital

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A Silicon Valley venture capital firm has invested $8 million in Orbis Education, a locally based maker of nursing-education software.

Menlo Park, Calif.-based Lightspeed Venture Partners engineered the capital infusion in late December to help Orbis expand its nursing-education programs. Orbis announced the deal today.

“We took the approach of build slowly, show what we’re doing works,” said Orbis CEO Dan Briggs. “We’ve proven the concept. Now we’re looking at growth.”

Founded in 2003, Orbis offers a system that helps universities and hospitals train new nurses. Last year, it had $4.5 million in revenue, Briggs said, and 33 employees. Orbis aims to boost its work force past 50 by the end of the year.

Before founding Orbis, Briggs, 49, had a 19-year career with Roche Diagnostics Corp., rising from the sales ranks to lead the development and sale of the corporation's virtual physician startup MyDoc.com. A subsidiary of locally based Standard Management Corp. bought MyDoc.com in 2003.

At its inception, Orbis raised $1 million from Briggs’ friends and family. In 2007, it attracted another $3 million from local angel investors. Orbis seeks to capitalize on the coming nationwide shortage of nurses, a trend driven by the aging U.S. population, health care reform, and the limited physical capacity of nursing schools.

Briggs noted that last year, U.S. nursing schools turned away more than 100,000 applicants for lack of classroom space. Based on Bureau of Labor Statistics data, Orbis expects a shortfall of 600,000 nurses in the U.S. by 2016.

Briggs said his company’s system is helping to address the demand for new nurses by virtually linking nursing schools and hospitals. Through Orbis, the schools can offer classroom content online but still provide the hands-on clinical training nurses require to earn bachelor's degrees.

More than 500 students are now using the Orbis system through partnerships in San Diego, Glendale, Calif., and Indianapolis. Here, Orbis has partnered with Marian University and St. Vincent Health. Briggs said Orbis is charting a “high 90s” success rate on nursing board exams among students who have used its system. He said that compares with a national average in the “high 80s.”

Other Orbis customers include San Diego State University, the University of Oklahoma, San Diego-based Sharp HealthCare, and Glendale, Calif.-based Glendale Adventist Medical Center.

Briggs said Orbis tracks the classroom portion of nursing education online through a variety of means, including interactive simulations, student-and-faculty chat rooms and virtual games. The hands-on portion happens in clinical settings.

The Orbis system appeals particularly to students who have earned degrees in other fields, Briggs said, but discover later in life they’d like to become nurses. Ironically, he said, many of its users never notice Orbis’ role in their education.

“The schools [that educate nurses] do it very well. Marian is an excellent education center. We increase their capacity,” Briggs said. “You still go to nursing school at Marian. You graduate with a Marian degree. Orbis’ job, we’re kind of like Intel. It makes your computer operate correctly. But you say you have a Compaq. At the end of the day, the student never knows who Orbis is.”

Orbis will use the bulk of its $8 million to hire more programmers, Web developers and IT specialists who can deploy its system at more nursing schools and hospitals.

Lightspeed Venture Partners principal Andrew Chung is taking a seat on Orbis’ board.

“Orbis has an innovative and cost-effective model for helping nursing schools expand student capacity and generate a high-quality pool of nursing graduates,” Chung said. “We are excited about the company’s long-term ability to revolutionize the nursing education field.”
 

ADVERTISEMENT

  • include links in articles
    Just in general, I would like to see IBJ include links to the websites of the topic companies. When reading online, it makes it so much easier to just jump over and look at the company being discussed.
  • Story
    Ashton:

    The company's development sounds a lot like Phigenics. Different industry, but a parallel path.

    Best-

    Cam

    Cam

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Uh, sorry Johnnie, but you are incorrect. Despite the assertions by yourself and various defenders and captains, sports attendance is NOT off significantly at most sporting events in the US. Variances in attendance has been in the range of single digits, both + & - for years now. MLB has had most of its best overall attendance nubers in the last decade, and that trend has been consistent for most major sporting events. The number one issue cited by most fans when asked about attendance is the overall cost of attending. The presence of HD and big screen televisions in home doesn't even register, as a factor for not attending an event. VALUE in the product is the key, and apparently is something lacking in the current ICS. What other explanation is there when with what is routinely touted as the "best" racing on the planet, fans are staying away in DROVES. A "close" title battle into the last event at Fontana, with the "cars and stars" of the ICS, and who showed up? MAYBE 8K. Sorry, but HD TV isn't to blame for that kind of fan apathy.

  2. Do you need finance to establish your business ? Are you interested in getting a loan at 3% from our private company? If so please Email: suntrust_oil@blumail.org

  3. If she was worth the $ the public outcry over direct tv dropping them would have kept them on their dishes as we have seen with other companies. I too quit watching channel 13 after she showed up since I left channel 8 because of her all show rather than production results. When Randy on 8 corrected her she had a big head and incorrectly challenged his correction for pronunciation of a city. Other antics while she matures was too much for me with her very inaccurate forecasts. All the forecasters were predicting rain until Thursday except Chris. They predicted sunny on Thursday but instead of rain until Thursday upon which the sun would finally make it out in full glory Chris was right on the money just as I too predicted looking at the radar on weather.gov. One thing I love about Angela is the fear you can see in her every time it thunders in the winter. It far exceeds the entertainment value of her body language (high heel noise drags, depression, etc) when her forecasts are so incorrect. Her hair stands on end, you have to see it!!!

  4. Good Day, Apply For A Loan I am Mr Fernadez Antonio, a private Loan lender and a cooperate financial for real estate and any kinds of business financing. I also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at 3% interest rate We offer any kind of loans. email us via fernadezloaninvest@outlook.com LOAN APPLICATION FORM First name:......................... Middle name:......................... Last name:........................................ Date of birth (yyyy-mm-dd):....................... Gender:........................................... Marital status:................................... Total Amount Needed............................... Loan Duration.................................... Address:.......................................... City:............................................. State/province:................................... Zip/postal code:.................................. Country:.......................................... Phone:............................................ Fax:.............................................. Mobile/cellular:.................................. Monthly Income.................................... Occupation:....................................... Best Regard, Mr Fernadez Antonio.

  5. i will love to share my testimony to you all the people in world i got married to my husband about 2 year ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,fighting about little things he always comes home late at night,drinking too much and sleeping with other women out side i have never love any man in my life except him. he is the father of my child and i don't want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are and have today .few month ago he now decided to live me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken.i called my mom and explain every thing to her,my mother told me about DR.okoro how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad i was surprise about it because they have been without each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back to each other. i was directed to DR. okoro on his email:okorospell@gmail.com and explain everything to him,so he promise me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we where so much in love again and that it was another female spirit that was controlling my husband he told me that my problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OK So he cast a spell for me and after two days my love came back asking me to forgive him i Am so happy now. so that why i decided to share my experience with every body that have such problem contact Dr okoro the great spell caster on his email addresses spellcasterforlove@outlook.com

ADVERTISEMENT