A few years ago, at a Trinity Ventures offsite we were brainstorming new investment areas, and tech solutions for the aging population came up as a category for discussion. We had seen stats that percentage of the population above 65 year of age is expected to rise to 22% by 2030. We were trying to figure out a framework under which we should be thinking about this category and my Trinity partner Patricia Nakache came up with the caption “Aging Awesome”. We realized that this captured what we were all thinking as a broad but actionable thesis: we should look for technology-based solutions that help the aging population not just live longer but live happier and healthier.
Since that offsite, Trinity has made several investments around this thesis. We invested in a company called Zero Fasting that keeps track of your fasting regimen. We invested in a company in the fitness sector called Caliber Fitness, a company in the mindfulness and meditation area, Ten Percent Happier, and a company in the relationship management category called Relish.
One area in this category that we were digging into a couple of years ago related to keeping the aging population healthy at their homes. This led us to the Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) category. We already knew that there had been successful companies in this area, such as Livongo which focuses on helping with disease prevention and mild disease management. We decided to focus on the reality of many in the aging population that are unfortunately already stricken by multiple serious comorbidities, such as COPD, heart disease and diabetes. How could we have a positive impact on the wellbeing of this population by providing better in-home disease management?
When we met Harmonize Health founders Riya Pulicharam and Kevin Zhao, we realized that they were building a platform to address exactly this set of patients. Further, they had identified the right set of customers to whom this value proposition would appeal: value-based care providers bearing the risk on patient care, instead of fee-for-service organizations that pass the risk to payers (insurance companies) or employers. With these risk bearing organizations, the interests are aligned between the providers, patient and payers.
Riya and Kevin were already in trials with one such organization and initial results showed stunning savings for the provider organization (ROI of 7:1) while dramatically improving health outcomes. Riya’s deep understanding of the category with her 20 years of experience as an MD in population health was super impressive. Kevin had been with a healthcare monitoring device company that, despite good technology, had not seen broad adoption, and with Harmonize he was committed to delivering a platform that first and foremost would be so simple that the target older population would actually use it on a regular basis, a metric called “compliance”.
We were also excited that the company was in early stages of engaging with a large healthcare provider. Interestingly, for this healthcare provider, the metrics of success were very clear: reduce hospitalizations and emergency room visits. Harmonize was not just deploying its platform with this customer but also helping them implement the right internal processes to leverage the platform. Initial results showed dramatic reduction in hospitalizations and emergency room visits with consistently high levels of compliance by patients.
Needless to say, we jumped to close the seed round and I joined the company’s board.
Fast forward 18 months and Harmonize has now expanded to five more large customers. The platform has matured and the UX is even more impressive. As the triage data that the Harmonize is collecting has become substantive, the company is applying machine learning techniques to this data to be able to deduce event correlations. Excitingly, it is on a path to be able to predict when an adverse patient event may be imminent, which is the holy grail of population health care. During the COVID period, Harmonize customers accelerated the deployment of the Harmonize platform among the patients in their care, thereby keeping them healthy as well as safe in their homes. The company also hired Frank Han, a repeat Trinity exec, as CEO to help continue to build the business alongside Riya and Kevin.
Just this week Harmonize announced that it closed a $10 million Series A round, in which Trinity was pleased to invest more than its pro rata share. We are delighted to support Harmonize in its quest to accomplish its mission of making the lives of the aging population ever more awesome, by keeping them healthy where they are the happiest: in their homes.