Lake Charles native Paul Robichaux is known for his role in mdPortal, healthtech startup with a focus on telemedicine in dermatology. As co-founder and CEO of the just over two year old company, Paul works alongside his wife, Venessa Pena-Robichaux, and CTO, Victor Lyuboslavsky to help dermatologists use telemedicine.
“The idea for our company was inspired by the experience of our cofounder, Dr. Venessa Pena-Robichaux, growing up in south Texas,” explains Robichaux. “There was very little access to affordable, quality healthcare and she often found herself traveling to Mexico for healthcare. With md Portal, we want to help ease the burden of traveling to the doctors office for routine conditions starting in the dermatology field.”
Find out more about Paul and his startup below:
What is the most exciting thing you are working on right now?
I’m the founder and CEO of a healthcare company called md Portal that’s changing healthcare. We’re helping dermatologists connect with their patients using telemedicine with our platform called MyDerm Portal. It’s an incredibly exciting time to be in health IT. Our focus is on increasing access to affordable healthcare while making technology adoption easy and simple for physicians.
If you wrote a regular column for Silicon Bayou News what would it be about and what would you name it?
I’ve made a lot of mistakes and learned a ton as a first time entrepreneur. My column would focus on sharing that information with the community to help other entrepreneurs avoid making the same mistakes. I’d call it, How to Hack Your Startup!
If you could win any award in the world, which would you be most proud to possess?
Husband of the Year Award, followed closely by the Best Place to Work award.
If you were stuck on an elevator for two hours, what one person (dead or alive) would you choose to be stuck with?
This is an easy one–my wife and business partner, Venessa.
IYO, which institution is most due for disruption?
Of course, I’m a little biased! Despite all the changes, Healthcare is more expensive and more fragmented than it has ever been. Given the proliferation of technology to the masses, the opportunity to improve how we deliver healthcare in America is huge. I think that we are on the verge of major disruption in healthcare and I’m excited to be a part of the change.
If you had to pick a drink to describe yourself (alcoholic or non-alcoholic) what would it be?
Irish Coffee. I’m half Irish and I can’t live without my morning coffee.
Tell us about your biggest failure.
I caught the entrepreneurship bug early in life thanks in large part to my dad. When I was about 12 years old, my brother and I, with the help of our dad, started to sell vegetables from our garden to local grocery stores. It was hard work. We woke up before school, picked the vegetables and scrubbed them clean to get them ready for sale that morning. I failed to see the bigger opportunity and quit after the first season of doing it, despite my dad’s support. Now I realize how important it is to be persistent and to never quit. Today, the market for local foods is tremendous–we could’ve grown the business to something incredible had I stuck with it.
What’s your favorite thing to do on a Sunday afternoon?
If I’m town, there are few things better than boiling a mess of crawfish and watching an LSU game with my family.
If you had to eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Boudin balls from Steamboat Bill’s in Lake Charles. I hate sharing those!
If you could live in any other time period, which would you choose?
I would go back to my youth …but only if I can bring my experience back with me 🙂
What are you most excited about happening on the Silicon Bayou that you aren’t directly involved in?
Silicon Bayou is an incredible resource for entrepreneurs like myself that want to keep in touch with the startup scene in Louisiana. I really enjoy the Week in Review section that keeps me updated with all the exciting new startups coming out of Louisiana. Just the other week, I learned about another healthcare startup called BeneFit that’s encouraging people across the United States to exercise more through social media engagement.
Also, I encourage folks to check out Health Wildcatters – www.healthwildcatters.com. This healthcare-focused business accelerator provides up to $30,000 in funding, office space and gives mentorship to startups in a 12-week program; mdPortal is a graduate of the program.
The standard superpower dichotomy: