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Mental health chatbot Wysa raises $20 million



Mental health chatbot Wysa raises $20 million


Mental health chatbot Wysa raised $20 million in a Series B funding round led by HealthQuad.

Other participants in the relaunch include British International Investment (BII) and former investors W Health Ventures, Kae Capital, Google Assistant Investments and pi Ventures.

Series B comes just over a year after Wysa announced a $5.5 million Series A fundraiser. The startup also recently received a Breakthrough Device Designation from the FDA for using its chatbot with adults who have chronic musculoskeletal pain and related depression and anxiety.

WHAT DOES HE DO

Wysa offers an AI chatbot that can guide users through cognitive behavioral therapy for issues like low mood, anxiety, and stress. The startup’s employer offering also includes a library of self-care exercises on self-esteem, sleep, and mindfulness, as well as optional access to human trainers from Wysa.

Wysa said the chatbot can also direct users to higher levels of care, such as a mental health professional or a crisis support line, if patients need more support.

The startup plans to use the capital inflow to expand globally, particularly in the US, UK and India. The Series B will also support multiple languages, as well as access through the WhatsApp messaging service.

“Wysa has not only been extremely successful as a consumer wellness platform, but has also become a powerful, clinically validated tool for proactively managing mental health and wellness,” co-founder Ramakant Vempati said in a statement.

“Wysa meets people where they are, whether that means a little help with occasional workplace stress, coping with debilitating pain, depression and anxiety. With this funding, we hope to continue to grow and help millions of other people.”

MARKET IMAGE

Another company offering a mental health chatbot is Woebot Health, which recently secured a $9.5 million investment from Leaps by Bayer. Woebot also closed a $90 million Series B round and earned its own breakthrough device designation for its digital therapy for postpartum depression in 2021.

However, there are other companies that offer health-related chatbots, including Ada Health’s rating and navigation platform and Babylon Health’s symptom checker.

While competition is fierce in the broader digital mental health space, the clinical arena remains a popular target for investors. According to Rock Health’s latest digital health financing report, mental health startups raised $1.3 billion in the first half of 2022.

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