Like the rest of the world, patients of physical therapy were forced to adapt to a digital world, as patients grew uncomfortable with in-patient services. Patients that are not at risk for falls or suffering from movement disorders were prime candidates to continue their therapy regimens online using virtual therapy. Kaia Health is a digital therapeutics provider that combines computer vision technology with human-powered care to help patients receive treatment for their Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). The platform doesn’t require specialized equipment and uses a cellphone’s camera to monitor patients’ movements during therapy exercises, providing instant feedback and support. Coaches and medical providers are available when needed to add continued support. During the pandemic, the company grew 600%.
AlleyWatch caught up with CEO and Founder Konstantin Mehl to learn more about the inspiration for the business, the company’s impressive traction, plans for expanded care options for patients and providers, latest round of funding, which brings the total funding raised to $125M, and much, more.
Who were your investors and how much did you raise?
This was a $75M Series C funding round from investors that include Optum Ventures, Eurazeo, 3VC, Balderton Capital, Heartcore Capital, Symphony Ventures, and A Round Capital.
Tell us about the product or service that Kaia Health offers.
Kaia Health’s MSK app features patented Motion Coach™ computer vision technology, which tracks the body by measuring thousands of data points every minute during exercising and a functional movement test. It provides ongoing support and real-time, automated PT-grade exercise feedback, creating a more personalized, effective, and engaging experience than sensor straps or monthly tele-PT video calls.
What inspired the start of Kaia Health?
I had chronic back pain himself and had a hard time finding the right care.
Kaia uses the smartphone camera to correct exercises in real-time. The real-time feedback on exercise form is very interactive and the feedback responds very directly to the users’ movements. This way we can deliver very actionable suggestions and motivational cues. This creates trust and confidence – which is especially important for users who might not have exercised in a while and want more guidance. In addition, we use our computer vision motion tracking technology as a digital biomarker tool (to quantity improvement in movement) as well as to enable gamified exercise experiences (e.g. a warm-up movement game).
Kaia collaborates with external medical providers to offer the best care to patients. This product extension is called ‘Kaia Gateway’.
What market does Kaia Health target and how big is it?
The MSK market is a $150B market per year in the US.
What’s your business model?
We sell Kaia as a medical benefit to health plans, employers, and payers.
How has COVID-19 impacted the business?
Our book of business increased by 600%.
What was the funding process like?
We found an investor who already had a strong investment hypothesis for our market, so the process was rather easy.
What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?
There are many aspects, ranging from market attractiveness, scalability of our solution, traction, and team.
What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months?
We will definitely grow our team a lot and continue to serve our customers and release some great features for users.
What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?
That depends very much on the specific business. Some businesses don’t need to raise Venture Capital, but can instead grow organically, for example.
Where do you see the company going now over the near term?
We plan to double in size in the next 12 to 15 months.
What’s your favorite outdoor dining restaurant in NYC
Taqueria Gramercy, as our office is right next to it and they have amazing Tacos!