Simple Habit raises $2.5 million for freemium meditation app

By Jonah Comstock
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San Francisco-based meditation app Simple Habit has raised $2.5 million in a new round of funding that includes investors New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Fabrice Grinda's FJ Labs, Foundation Capital and the founders of Dropbox and Gusto. This is the first round of funding for the company, whose app launched on the iOS App Store in April 2016.

CEO Yunha Kim, who went from being an investment banker to being an entrepreneur and CEO (of lockscreen app Locket, which was acquired by Wish), knows something about work stress. She created Simple Habit, the story goes, to deal with her own stress but saw potential to bring the benefits of meditation to others.

"We aim to help millions of people throughout the world live more mindfully," Kim said in a statement. "This new round of financing will allow us to expand our team in San Francisco."

The app offers more than a thousand guided meditations from famous mindfulness and meditation teachers. Users can also search for meditations aimed at particular symptoms like insomnia, or aimed at particular life situations like a hard day at work. Meditations are as short as five minutes long, and the app encourages users to complete one a day. The latest update enables premium users to download meditations for offline access (during a plane ride, for example), a new search feature, and even an alarm clock feature that can wake the user up with a gentle morning meditation. The app is free, but users can pay for premium access and in-app purchases. 

"Simple Habit was crafted from a personal need that applies to all of us," Rick Yang, a partner at NEA, said in a statement. "The benefits of mindfulness and meditation are clear, and Yunha and the team have built a beautiful product and experience that makes it accessible to everybody."