Aging-in-place facilitator Homethrive has raised an additional $20 million in Series B funding.
For Homethrive, the funding round — led by Human Capital, with participation from Allianz, 7wireVentures and Pitango HealthTech — will go towards its plans for “aggressive expansion” and new technology investments. And for similar senior-focused startups, the capital injection shows that venture capital interest in the space is far from cooling, despite a recent downturn in investment.
“This funding will help us build our sales and marketing capabilities, expand them so we can reach more people, and promote this kind of support for caregivers,” said Dave Jacobs, co-founder and co-CEO of Homethrive. . Health care news. “And it will also help people understand how Homethrive’s solution really uniquely addresses that need.”
Jacobs and his business partner, David Greenberg, launched Homethrive, based in Northbrook, Ill., in 2018 after each faced family caregiving challenges with their parents.
Prior to founding Homethrive, Jacobs spent 15 years as a senior executive at Medline Industries, a $12 billion healthcare products company. Greenberg also served as a senior executive at Medline, responsible for leading the organization’s strategic priorities.
Yet even with their health care history, the couple often felt lost trying to find and coordinate services for their parents, Jacobs recalled.
“Despite the fact that we were healthcare executives with great industry knowledge and were blessed with close families and the means to support our families, the care journey was incredibly difficult,” he said. “It was hard.”
To alleviate these pressures for others, Jacobs and Greenberg sought to create a company that, in very simple terms, acts as a digital roadmap for senior care.
“As we envision building businesses that inform and connect the health consumer, the key ingredient isn’t just the idea behind the business,” said Glen Tullman, co-founder of 7wireVentures and CEO of Transcarent. , in a press release. “The key ingredient is the people to make the idea a large-scale reality.”
Someone with a relative diagnosed with dementia, for example, could download Homethrive’s smart digital assistant, Dari, which would then offer information about the disease and access to social workers. In this scenario, Homethrive could additionally help family caregivers find professional services in their market, including home care and home care agencies.
“One of the most common things [we do] is that we help people understand the differences between ‘skilled’ and ‘unskilled’ home care, helping them access it,” Jacobs said. “It’s one of the most common things people come to us for, in terms of service. We are truly a partner in home care [agencies] Across the country.”
In terms of how services are paid for, Homethrive is offered as a benefit through self-insured employers and Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, plus Medicare supplement and long-term care insurance. Homethrive is currently available in the United States
Some of the organizations offering Homethrive as a benefit include the Michigan Manufacturers Association, law firm McDermott Will & Emery, and health technology startups emids. Private wealth management firm Rockefeller Capital Management is another corporate client.
“A service like Homethrive is an intangible that is inherently valuable,” Frank Due, senior vice president and head of human capital at Rockefeller, said in a statement. “It’s a premium service that navigates an important and meaningful space that we’re not used to.”
Tullman is also Chairman of the Board of Homethrive.
VC’s biggest picture
With Series B of $20 million, Homethrive’s fundraising total reaches approximately $43 million. The company previously raised an $18 million Series A round in October 2020.
Jacobs and his team are optimistic about Homethrive’s expansion plans, especially with employers recognizing family caregiving as a must-have benefit in 2022.
In addition to being a good recruitment and retention tool, benefits help employees stay productive. The direct economic effect of the need for care is estimated at nearly $44 billion via the loss of more than 650,000 jobs and nearly 800,000 caregivers suffering from work absenteeism issues, according to the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.
“We believe that caregiver support will become a mainstay for self-insured employers, just as mental health support is today,” Jacobs noted.
More and more MA plans are starting to see the value that companies like Homethrive also bring to the table.
Increasingly, IA schemes provide benefits that target the social determinants of health and prevent negative health effects long before they occur. The information collected by Homethrive at home potentially gives plans unique insights into the health and well-being of their members.
“We’re usually a canary in the coal mine for payers,” Jacobs said. “Because people start researching, using one of our roadmaps, most likely before they’ve spoken to a doctor and given a diagnosis – or even an evaluation.”
On the technology side, Homethrive plans to use the new funding to improve its digital assistant by giving it additional AI-powered capabilities.
“We do this to better recognize patterns when people need help,” Jacobs said. “Being able to deliver the right recommendations and do it at scale, very quickly.”
On a macro level, Homethrive’s Series B reflects venture capitalists’ appetite for senior care startups, particularly those taking a home care approach. In recent years, venture capitalists have funneled more than $2.5 billion into elder care and home care startups, according to data from Crunchbase.
“There’s just a ton of money flowing into the space,” MedArrive vice president of business development Bryant Hutson said at the HHCN Capital+Strategy conference. “There’s a lot more to experience.”
Also supported by 7wireVentures, MedArrive coordinates in-person care through emergency medical services (EMS) professionals, nurses, and community health workers, among others.
This appetite should remain strong, even if investors show signs of a more conservative approach.
Global venture capital funding totaled $47 billion in April 2022, the lowest amount invested in private companies in the past year, according to Crunchbase. The April drop could be part of a longer-term trend, as the first quarter of 2022 also saw a change in funding.
Specifically, April funding was down 10% month-over-month and 12% year-over-year.
Even though the VC landscape is changing, Homethrive still sees plenty of leads, Jacobs said.
“As you have the combination of more people getting older and more people wanting to be home, it places more responsibilities on family caregivers – unpaid family caregivers,” he said. “So the need and the pressure, the stress on them, it increases exponentially over time.”