Type 2 diabetes management company Virta announced a whopping $93 million Series C financing round late last week. The latest round was led by Caffeinated Capital with participation from Venrock, Obvious Ventures, Creandum, Playground Global and SciFi VC.
This announcement brings the company’s total funding pot to around $166 million, coming roughly a year-and-a-half after its Series B round, which raked in $45 million.
WHAT THEY DO
Virta is a digital Type 2 diabetes coach that primarily focuses on diet.The company’s approach is different from other diabetes management companies because it combines a digital offering — comprised of tracking, coaching and remote monitoring — with an entirely different treatment modality, a nutrition-based ketogenic diet.
Virta has previously claimed that its technology can help patients reverse their Type 2 diabetes.
In 2018 the company made waves when it announced that it would be offering its services to employers and health plans at 100% risk — meaning customers will only pay if the company succeeds in the goal of reversing Type 2 diabetes and getting patients off of expensive diabetes medications.
More recently, Virta teamed up with the US Department of Veteran’s Affairs on a pilot study that found 98% of veterans with Type 2 diabetes enrolled in Virta’s digital diabetes management program reduced or controlled their estimated HbA1c level after 90 days.
WHAT IT’S FOR
The new capital will be put towards growing the company’s product and reach.
“This latest funding is validation for the consistency and durability of our health and economic outcomes in both clinical trial and commercial patients,” Sami Inkinen, Virta Health’s cofounder and CEO, said in a statement. “We can now invest more into growth to help millions of people living with Type 2 diabetes, while also investing in product and research to address other diseases.”
The diabetes care market is hot in digital health. In fact, according to the Silicon Valley Bank, in 2018 diabetes companies raised $148 million — making it one of the most well-funded sectors of digital health.
One of Virta’s main competitors is Livongo, a chronic care management platform that got its start in diabetes. Livongo was exceptionally well funded with more than $200 million in venture dollars. Over the summer Livongo went public. Since then it has inked a number of deals with major employers and payers — most notable was the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program.
ON THE RECORD
“The health outcomes Virta delivers for people with Type 2 diabetes are unmatched in the absence of medications or surgery, and particularly noteworthy for the level of control achieved while eliminating medications," Dr. Alan Moses, a Virta advisor and former SVP and global chief medical officer of Novo Nordisk, said in a statement. “What is even more exciting is that Virta’s care delivery model has transformational potential for a variety of conditions beyond diabetes.”