Startup News: BetterUp, Path Lead in Coaching & Therapy Services, Mojo Vision Partners with Amazon
November 15, 2022

Startup News: BetterUp, Path Lead in Coaching & Therapy Services, Mojo Vision Partners with Amazon

John Kimelman

BetterUp, Path Lead in Coaching & Therapy Services, Mojo Vision Partners with Amazon

Investments in the fast-growing teletherapy and mobile-based coaching industries are creating opportunities for startups serving varying needs.

According to Crunchbase, funding from investors surpassed $1.4 billion worldwide so far in 2022, a huge spike from just $418 million in 2018. Some of that rise has been attributed to the role the pandemic played in reducing the opportunity for in-office visits. Moreover, the number of venture-backed teletherapy startups has jumped as well, from 15 in 2010 to more than 100 today.

Crunchbase reports that the teletherapy business model over the past few years has generally moved from a pay-out-of-pocket subscription mode to more of a traditional insurance model. Among the largest companies in the space today are BetterHelp, which was acquired by Teladoc Health in 2015, and Talkspace, which went public last year.

But a slew of private companies are also making their mark. Path, which has raised over $100 million, helps connect patients with a network of therapists covered by insurance. And Quartet Health, which has raised more than $270 million, allows insurance-based mental health providers find and manage patients.

Then there’s Alma, which works behind the scenes helping therapists with their administrative and billing chores, in turn allowing them more time with their patients. Alma has raised a total of $220.5 million in five funding rounds, the most recent of which was a Series D round in August.

Even Prince Harry has found a place in this industry. Last year, the second son of Great Britain’s King Charles III took the job of “chief impact officer” with San Francisco-based BetterUp, which provides teletherapy and other types of career coaching and counseling to employees at corporations. Thus far, the startup has raised $566 million and gained some extra publicity with the perfect creative hire: a Royal with a particular interest in mental-health issues. At a recent conference in San Francisco, the prince said, “what we're trying to do now — the goal — is the democratization of coaching to make sure we can get it to the masses."

Mojo Vision’s Shopping Reality

Early this month, Mojo Vision, which has developed an augmented-reality contact lens, announced the creation of a new app created in partnership with Amazon. According to IEEE Spectrum, an engineering publication, “the app allows users to ask Alexa, by talking, to add items to their shopping list that they can then view as a scrollable list through the lens while walking through the grocery store. Users can check off items while holding their gaze for a moment.” Recently, Mojo Vision CEO Drew Perkins became the first person to wear a "feature complete prototype lens” from the company during an internal test. The demo was significant because it showed the contact lens can remain functional, without any wiring to the device, while being worn.

While it’s debatable whether this is the killer app that will revolutionize shopping, the technology is viewed as an advancement in how augmented reality devices as small as contacts — as opposed to glasses or headwear –can be used in a practical setting paired with voice-recognition software.

About the author: John Kimelman is a veteran journalist who has worked at Barron’s and CNBC covering such topics as investing and commercial banking.

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PLEASE READ THESE IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICES & DISCLOSURES

The information and material presented in this article is provided for your informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer by Forge Global, Inc., Forge Securities LLC or any of its affiliates (collectively, "Forge") to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy any securities and may not be used or relied upon in connection with any offer or sale of securities. An offer or solicitation can be made only through the delivery of final offering document(s) and purchase agreement and will be subject to the terms and conditions and risks delivered in such documents.

This article does not constitute an offer to provide investment advice or service. Registered representatives of Forge Securities LLC do not (1) advise any member on the merits or prudence of a particular investment or transaction, or (2) assist in the determination of fair value of any security or investment, or (3) provide legal, tax, or transactional advisory services. Securities referenced in this article may be offered by Forge Securities LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.

Forge Securities LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Forge Global, Inc. Certain affiliates may act as principals in such transactions. Forge Data LLC is an affiliate of Forge Global, Inc. and Forge Securities LLC.

Investing in private company securities is not suitable for all investors. An investment in private company securities is highly speculative, involving a high degree of risk, and investors should be prepared to withstand a total loss of your investment. Private company securities are also highly illiquid and there is no guarantee that a market will develop for such securities. Each investment also carries its own specific risks and investors should conduct their own, independent due diligence regarding the investment, including obtaining additional information about the company, opinions, financial projections and legal or investment advice. Accordingly, investing in private company securities is appropriate only for those investors who can tolerate a high degree of risk and do not require a liquid investment.