Diabetes-focused healthtech firm to grow Edinburgh headcount

EMEA boss John Lister notes that Dexcom's Scottish site has increased from three to 50 staff. Picture: Nick Abadilla.
EMEA boss John Lister notes that Dexcom's Scottish site has increased from three to 50 staff. Picture: Nick Abadilla.
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A healthtech business that enables diabetics to continuously monitor their glucose levels is looking to expand its workforce in Scotland after opening a base in Edinburgh.

San Diego-based Dexcom was founded in 1999. John Lister who heads up its operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), told The Scotsman that it focuses on type one diabetes, where patients need to inject insulin. It offers monitoring using sensors connected to smart devices, avoiding the need for finger stick blood samples – and likened to watching a film compared to only being able to see one frame.

Dexcom earlier this month revealed survey findings showing that of Britons living with diabetes, 52 per cent felt having to constantly check their sugar levels to avoid a potentially fatal hypoglycaemic attack has caused them to experience prolonged feelings of stress, anguish and anger.

Lister noted that while managing the condition can be a burden for diabetics and their families, Dexcom’s offering allows users to see trends over time and helps them make better-informed decisions as part of any insulin regime.

In 2016 it opened the Scottish site, its EMEA base, starting with three staff and where 50 of its 75 UK workers are now based. “It’s a new sort of company and new technology to the Edinburgh landscape,” Lister added, praising the quality of the local workforce.

And now the plan is to keep growing headcount at a similar pace in the capital (“we will certainly continue to invest in the Edinburgh office”) while the firm is looking to broaden into Asia and Eastern Europe.

The firm’s international business outside the US, of which Edinburgh and EMEA form a significant share, represented about a quarter of revenue for the last quarter. During that period, DexCom raised its 2018 guidance. It expects revenues of $975 million ($761m), up from the previous projection of $925m.