Vida Health raises $18M for health and wellness coaching app

By Heather Mack
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San Francisco-based digital health coaching startup Vida Health has raised $18 million in Series B funding in a round led by Canvas Ventures. Nokia Growth Partners and existing investor Aspect Ventures also contributed to the round, which brings the company’s total funding to a little under $28 million.

Vida, which offers health and wellness coaching to both the direct-to-consumer and enterprise markets, will use the latest funding to scale up its mobile coaching platform and expand its workforce. The Vida platform pairs people one-on-one with human coaches to manage chronic conditions or improve their health overall through behavior change. Individuals can talk to their coach using text, voice or video in real-time, and they can also connect to a supportive community that can include friends, family, doctors, coaches or people with similar conditions.

Additionally, people can use Vida to access a wide range of educational resources, including evidence-based clinical programs for diabetes prevention, weight loss, or hypertension, as well as exercise and diet information. The platform can also integrate with over 100 apps and devices.   

Stephanie Tilenius, cofounder and CEO of Vida, said the company’s method of matching people to their coaches  (who range from nutritionists and nurses to diabetes coaches and fitness trainers ) and the ability to communicate in a way that best suits the user, is what has helped Vida achieve high engagement and grow the company.

“The fact that it is multimodal, that we are differentiated in what we offer and we meet people where they are instead of prescribing a one-size-fits-all approach is really attractive to users,” Tilenius told MobiHealthNews in an interview. “We’re taking a holistic approach to health, which is the way humans naturally work. We support them and provide content, sync it with their device data and put it all in one place.”

Vida’s clients mainly include providers, payers, and self-insured employers, but they have also worked with a pharmaceutical company (they created a program last year for AstraZeneca within its app). Provider partners include Duke University, MD Anderson Cancer Center, and Stanford University. Employers include eBay, furniture company SteelCase, and boat supply chain West Marine. This summer, a study showed Vida helped 58 percent of a UnitedHealthcare cohort lose weight and reduce their blood pressure.

Along with the funding, Canvas Ventures’ Partner Rebecca Lynn will join Vida’s Board of Directors. Lynn said her firm was interested in Vida because they address both an “enormous market and a dire need,” and cited the CDC’s figure of $2.5 trillion for the chronic disease care market in the United States.

“We were also drawn to their approach,” Lynn said in a statement. “Vida couples an elegant and intuitive mobile technology with a network of highly educated and experienced health coaches. Vida users are matched with coaches who may include nurses, therapists, nutritionists, personal trainers, and mentors. Their user engagement rates are the highest I’ve seen in the category.”