New York City-based home-lab-test startup LetsGetChecked said this morning that it has wrapped up an oversubscribed $71 million Series C round co-led by Illumina Ventures and HLM Venture Partners.
The raise also included new backers Deerfield, CommonFund Capital and Angeles Investments, while investors Transformation Capital, Optum Ventures and Qiming Venture Partners USA returned to further fuel the startup's business. With this, Illumina's Nick Naclerio, founding partner, and HLM's Steven Tolle, partner, will be joining LetsGetChecked's board as members.
WHAT IT DOES
Founded in 2014, LetsGetChecked provides consumer customers with a range of at-home testing kits, such as ones for hormone levels, sexually transmitted infections, liver performance, nutrition and – specifically for frontline healthcare workers – COVID-19.
Customers receive their kit in the mail, with which they collect and return a personal sample for testing. One of the startup's lab partners analyzes the sample and returns it to a LetsGetChecked physician, who reviews the results and counsels customers – over the phone, if necessary. For later reference, test results are saved in a LetsGetChecked patient app that interfaces with Apple Health, Fitbit, Garmin and other consumer-friendly health tools.
As of March, the company has also been offering a COVID-19 "twin-track" antibody and PCR test exclusive to providers working at the point of care. However, the company said it hopes to release a direct-to-consumer version of the testing kit down the road.
"The company's work has never been more important now that the world faces a global pandemic, forcing us all to re-evaluate how we obtain health and wellness services," Illumina's Naclerio said in a statement. "LetsGetChecked is already having a profound impact on patient-led at-home healthcare, which is necessary now and will become increasingly common in the future."
WHAT IT'S FOR
The company said these funds will help build up its manufacturing, supply and testing capacity for COVID-19. It will be increasing activity at its California laboratory while boosting operations and partnerships across the U.S. and Europe.
"We have been developing our platform for more than five years and have helped hundreds of thousands of individuals by enabling access to high-quality testing and telehealth services in the home, across many health conditions," Peter Foley, CEO and founder of LetsGetChecked, said in a statement. "With the onset of COVID-19, we realigned resources with a view to helping with this global pandemic and are currently delivering tens of thousands of tests per day to critical and frontline healthcare workers"
Consumer-facing home testing startups were already picking up momentum around the time of LetsGetChecked's $30 million Series B, with competitors like EverlyWell, healthy.io and Scanwell Health all announcing new rounds or services over the course of the last year. However, COVID-19 has ramped up demand across the industry and led to some confusion with the FDA on more than one occasion. But the window for these companies to take their COVID-19 tests directly to consumers appears to be reopening: It was just a few weeks ago that LabCorp's COVID-19 RT-PCR test became the first permitted for at-home sample collection.
ON THE RECORD
"HLM invests in companies that inherently drive adoption due to the need they serve, and companies that leverage important market trends," Tolle said in a statement. "In this case, LetsGetChecked is helping to improve consumer access to care, which is increasingly essential."