The CareVoice (康语), focused on improving healthcare and the insurance experience for people in China, announced today it has raised over $2 million in early growth capital. The investment will be used to fuel its insurance business lines, accelerate technology development, consolidate its leadership in China’s major cities and expand to Southeast Asia. The company would not disclose their total valuation.
China’s health-care sector spending is projected to grow from $357 billion in 2011 to $1 trillion in 2020, according to McKinsey’s article.
The funding round has been co-led by two China- and US-based VCs, Haitao Capital and SOSV, and involved local Chinese and Southeast Asian healthcare investors.
“In just a couple of months, key players such as AXA, Ping’An, and Chubb became customers of The CareVoice, and the onboarding rate of newly-insured members has increased 10 times, reaching more than 50%,” said Geoffrey Handley, General Partner at Haitao Capital.
Currently, The CareVoice app lists hospitals, doctors in Shanghai, and medicines in China and their reviews from the patients, all in Chinese. While working at Sanofi for more than 10 years, CEO Sebastien Gaudin said he found that China’s healthcare market needs to build trust, and founded the company.
Established in June 2014, the startup went through Chinaccelerator’s batch 10 in 2016, coinciding with company’s shift towards health insurtech.
“It goes with the trend of privatization of healthcare. There has been huge investment to address consumers’ demand for better healthcare, and the percentage of private hospitals and clinics increased from 25% to 50%. These new medical facilities are embracing international standards, patient-centric care, and more transparency,” Gaudin told TechNode. “Private insurance companies and employers are supporting this trend too. This created opportunities for international startups like The CareVoice to get into health insurtech.”
The Carevoice includes a free open platform for the public to share their experience and get ratings and recommendations of medical providers. For individuals or employees covered by insurers who are clients of CareVoice, they get access to a VIP personalized access to the platform where their App experience reflects their insurance plan so that they can simply with more confidence find medical care, and use easily their insurance benefits.
Sebastien said the cost for an annual insurance ranges from RMB 7,000 to 20,000 to cover access to private medical services. CareVoice earns a percentage of that premium for its VIP membership SaaS services that is paid by insurers. While the company is not profitable yet, Sebastien said they expect positive net income this year.
In 2018, The CareVoice will focus its efforts on accelerating the development of its mobile platform and SaaS solutions for insurance incumbents, which enables them to undergo the critical digital transformation of health plans expected by mobile-savvy Chinese affluent consumers.