Naluri, a Malaysian digital health service provider, has closed a Series A funding round where it raised $5 million from cornerstone investor Integra Partners of Singapore and previous investors Duopharma Biotech Berhad, Pathology Asia (via Biomark) and M Venture Partners.
New investors also joined the financing event, including Hong Kong-based Sumitomo Corporation Equity Asia, Palm Drive Capital from New York and Canadian firm INP Capital. The round was also supported by the Hibiscus Fund of Malaysia's RHL Ventures and South Korea's KB Investment.
WHY IT MATTERS
Naluri offers human-led and AI-augmented digital health coaching for people with chronic diseases such as renal disease, cancer, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, as well as mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. It delivers multi-disciplinary support through structured programmes and proprietary app-based tools for individuals and corporate clients.
In a press statement, Naluri said it will use its fresh funds to launch its service in Thailand and the Philippines, as well as expand its operations in Singapore and Indonesia. It will enter the key Southeast Asian markets in the "coming months".
It also plans to build up its technology and data science capabilities to enhance its predictive algorithms, such as natural language processing and depression detection, as well as device connectivity and patient monitoring. The company will also use its latest funds to launch clinical research in Europe.
The health startup has worked with large corporations in Southeast Asia, including Reckitt, AXA Affin Berhad, Maxis, and SP Setia, to help moderate the rising cost of healthcare in the region and improve employee productivity and engagement.
THE LARGER TREND
Digital health companies providing offering tailored programmes and support to patients with various conditions have attracted investments this year.
In April, Arli, an addiction support platform in Australia, raised $1.9 million in a seed funding round to be used for its expansion in the US in early 2022. Hinge Health and SpineZone, both musculoskeletal treatment providers, also scored new funds from their respective funding events.
Meanwhile, Indian digital therapeutics company Fitterfly rolled out a COVID-19 recovery programme for diabetic patients early this month. Onduo Health, a company backed by Verily and Sanofi, said in January it is expanding its online coaching programme to tackle other health conditions, such as hypertension and mental health illness.
ON THE RECORD
"With mental health at the fore in light of the pandemic, we are delighted that companies are now taking bolder steps to tackle physical and mental health holistically, and these investments are an affirmation of Naluri’s business model and growth prospects in this field," Naluri Co-founder and CEO Azran Osman-Rani said in a statement.