Welltok Raises $12 Million To Launch Its Watson-Powered Health App


Welltok announces that it has raised an additional $12 million in funding, formally closing its Series D round, which was led by Bessemer Venture Partners, with participation from Emergence Capital Partners, Hearst Health Ventures, and Catholic Health Initiatives. The past year has been a major fundraising year for Welltok. The company raised a $22 million Series C in February, and then announced a $25 million Series D in October. Now, after making room for more investors and drawing an additional $12 million to its Series D, the company’s funding total has reached $59 million raised in less than a year, putting its lifetime total at $85 million.

Launched in 2009, Welltok found success marketing a Web-based personal health and wellness platform to insurance companies and health systems. Welltok’s platform allows users to set personal health goals, and then provides motivation and education to support them in their pursuit of those goals. It employs many of the standard tactics used to incentivize behavioral change in the emerging digital health ecosystem: support through social media, group fitness challenges, gamified fitness apps, and even the opportunity to earn gift cards for hitting milestones. It also captures data from fitness trackers and health apps to help users track their progress. The company counts payers like United Healthcare, Aetna, and Cigna as customers.

Now, with four years of growth under its belt, Welltok is preparing to launch a new product, the CafeWell Concierge, which will integrate with IBM’s Watson supercomputer to support health and wellness in much more direct ways. The app will go beyond supporting health and wellness goals, and will begin taking on preventative tasks, like reminding you that you should schedule your next doctor’s appointment, or helping you stick to a diet by pointing out calorie-friendly restaurants while on vacation. Spouses everywhere will be flattered to learn that this job, which they’ve been dutifully performing for years, will now be tackled by the famous Watson supercomputer.

At $89 million in investment funds raised in just five years of operation, Welltok’s likely hoping Watson can help establish its monetization strategy, in addition to improving our health.

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