SocialWellth Raises $7.5 Million To Expand Its mHealth Formulary Services


Two years after its official launch at HIMSS 2013 in New Orleans, SocialWellth has taken on its first round of outsider funding in the form of a $7.5 million venture round secured from undisclosed investors. While there has been no announcement about the new funding, SocialWellth has added Silverstream Capital Livewise Administrators as strategic investors on its website. SocialWellth has been making slow but steady inroads in the digital health sector by building a marketplace of vetted mHealth apps that it then customizes and licenses to payers and employers interested in improving health and wellness among its customers and employers.

The company is following the same turbulent startup path that Happtique attempted, but ultimately failed, to monetize. In June 2013, SocialWellth unveiled its app certification program. For the next several months, the company worked with digital health developers to populate its app store. Here is where the SocialWellth and Happtique stories diverge. Happtique delayed the launch of its app store for years, and eventually launched it with just 19 apps, many of which were questionable, and several were eventually proven to have major data security issues. SocialWellth, on the other hand, has reviewed and certified over 300 digital health apps.  In October 2013, SocialWellth announced that it had landed Cigna, its first major client. That deal led to Cigna rolling out its “You Go Cigna” digital health marketplace, an app store with clinically-safe health apps that are available for download by its customers. It also confirmed that SocialWellth’s monetization strategy had potential. The short-lived battle between SocialWellth and Happtique ended in December 2014, when SocialWellth acquired Happtique for an undisclosed sum.

Now, with its newly acquired assets from Happtique and an increasingly receptive marketplace, SocialWellth is ready to scale up, integrate Happtique with the rest of the SocialWellth product portfolio, and prove to the industry that there is real demand for a digital health formulary service vendor. With consumer electronics giants like Apple and Google making little effort to clean up their own health and wellness app sections, the need for a specialized marketplace to support legitimate healthcare providers and payers is real. The question is how quickly this business line would evaporate if Apple and Google decided to clean up their app stores and push out scrupulous or clinically unproven apps. Until then, SocialWellth is the only game in town, and now has the funding to ramp up.

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