ELITE 2018 Transformational Leader Rachel Loui of Innolab Digital Health Venture Fund & Incubator and Hacking Fears

Rachel Loui

Head of Strategy, Business Development, and Customer Insights, Innolab Digital Health Venture Fund & Incubator

Founder, Hacking Fears

Fearlessly Conquering the Chinese Market

Can lemonade and bad poetry make you better at your job? Rachel Loui thinks so, but more on that in a bit.

Boehringer Ingelheim recruited Rachel to serve as their Chief Strategy Officer and develop a new approach for the Chinese emerging market. Rachel was hired because she understood the rate of growth and adoption in China is insane, which would affect a company’s overall strategy.

For instance, drugs needed in China today could be much different in a decade. That meant better understanding the profile of diseases and identifying new business lines such as creating new specialty hospitals. Within 10 months, Rachel was promoted, given a 60-person team, and tasked with restructuring business operations in China. She created a strategy that drove 35% greater sales and marketing decision efficiency and increased ROI 125%.

She returned to America intending to become a China/Emerging Markets expert. She authored a humorous book, Why the Chicken Crossed the World, about the surprising China you never knew, and also became a Business in China guest lecturer at Columbia University.

Then she realized the vast similarities in the fast scale and rapidly changing environments between China and Silicon Valley. She initially volunteered to help tech startups better understand how to break into the healthcare industry, but soon saw a larger opportunity. She founded Innolab Digital Health Venture Fund & Incubator, and now helps startups such as WonderVR (VR for senior citizens); DoubleCheckCancer (telemedicine platform to connect Chinese cancer patients with U.S. hospitals); and more to accelerate growth and solve problems for pharma and payers.

But, back to lemonade and poetry. Between Rachel’s C-Suite interactions from Corporate Board Members to startup founders, she learned the common differentiator of CEO success was their ability to conquer fear. Thus, Rachel founded Hacking Fears, which offers training boot camps to help people overcome fears and increase job performance. Exercises could include forcing people to sell customized poetry in Grand Central Station or opening a lemonade stand (which is what Rachel did to prototype if this would work). It did. And now Rachel can help people achieve the same level of success she has.


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