Employee wellness company Newtopia gets $10M to expand genetic testing and coaching platform

By Heather Mack

Toronto-based Newtopia, a personalized health and wellness company, has raised  $10 million in Series A funding to expand its offering of health management and coaching plans based on genetic testing and behavioral science. A syndicate of both US and Canadian investors took part in the round, as well as Bloom Burton & Co., which specializes in the health sector through its affiliate Bloom Burton Healthcare Lending Trust.

The funding will be used to hire more staff and expand Newtopia’s reach domestically by partnering with employers to offer disease prevention programs in the workplace. The company currently has a staff of 50, and plans to grow the team “aggressively” in both New York and Toronto, according to a company statement.

“This investment will be used to fuel our continued growth and industry leading outcomes in the health care industry and accelerate the deployment of targeted disease prevention solutions,” Newtopia founder and CEO Jeff Ruby said in a statement. “We will continue empowering at-risk employees to take charge of their health and well-being while simultaneously helping business save on rising employee health care costs.”

Through genetic testing, personalized coaching, and a connected scale and activity tracker with a companion app, Newtopia’s goal is to reduce preventable, chronic diseases like obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke. The platform works in four steps: Employees complete an online profile to assess their current health and lifestyle choices, then mail in a saliva sample, and, once the genetic test results are in, they are matched with a personal coach. Together, they work to take actionable steps towards better health.

Newtopia’s goal is to “transform the way businesses engage in employee healthcare and disease prevention,” according to Ruby. Last year, the company partnered with Aetna to launch a metabolic syndrome risk reduction program. The program resulted in an average 10-pound weight loss for employees and healthcare costs savings.

“This is a great opportunity to leverage our deep expertise in healthcare innovation, development and commercialization to help accelerate Newtopia’s growth,” Brian Bloom, co-founder and president of Bloom Burton said in a statement. “Their unique approach to disease prevention and engagement aligns with our vision in the corporate health space and we’re excited to continue working together.”