New funding: Reperio Health, a Portland-based health tech company, has raised more than $6 million as part of its seed round. The startup is building a subscription service for at-home medical test kits that includes an app to help users make sense of their results.
The kit includes a blood test to measure levels of cholesterols, triglycerides and glucose, as well as tests for blood pressure, resting heart rate, body mass index and relative fat mass. All of the tests are FDA-approved. Customers get their test results immediately, and then mail the kits back for sterilization and reuse.
Strategy shift: The company began seeking patents for the kits in October 2019 and officially launched in April of last year. The initial plan was to target consumers as customers with the goal of sending out kits by late 2020.
The startup has shifted, said co-founder and CEO Travis Rush, and is now focused on the employer market.
“We’ve learned that there is a much bigger audience and more efficient ways to do this rather than going one at a time to people’s doors,” Rush said. In addition to employers, Rush says there is interest from employer benefit groups, insurers, hospitals and senior living businesses.
What’s next: The 11-person company will keep hiring in multiple roles, Rush said, including medical experts who will be available to help people concerned about their results. Kits should start shipping in April. An annual subscription for a once-a-year test will likely cost between $150 and $200.
Pandemic impact: COVID-19 has highlighted the need for and benefits of more flexible means of accessing healthcare, including preventative care and follow-up monitoring, Rush said.
“This has forced the industry to be a little more open-minded to the way that we’re going to do this in the future,” he said.
Founders’ pedigrees: Rush launched the company with his co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Matt Wallington. The two worked together at Sightbox, a company that Rush formed in 2015 that offered a subscription plan for eye exams and contact lens fittings and supplies. Johnson & Johnson acquired the startup in September 2017 for an undisclosed sum.
Health monitoring space: There are several competing startups in the at-home health monitoring space including EverlyWell, Scanwell, Thriva, WellnessFX, Baze, myLAB, LetsGetChecked and others. Seattle startup Tasso in July closed a $17 million investment round to help grow its at-home blood collection platform.
Investor interest: The seed round was co-led by Nashville’s Caduceus Capital Partners and Portland’s Rogue Venture Partners with additional investment from Liquid 2 Ventures and G Ventures, both located in the San Francisco Bay Area. It includes a $1 million investment by Rush.