Wysa Secures $20 Million to Address Global Mental Health Demand With AI Digital Therapeutics
Wysa, the leading AI digital platform for mental health, announces it has secured $20M in financing. Wysa will use this capital to further expand into the US, UK, India and other global markets across enterprises, payors, providers as well as improve wider usability through multi-lingual support and easier access via WhatsApp. The round is led by HealthQuad, who along with British International Investment (BII), the UK’s development finance institution, joins earlier investors W Health Ventures, Kae Capital, Google Assistant Investments, and pi Ventures amongst others.
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Globally, there is a huge demand-supply gap in the mental health space. One in eight people in the world live with a mental disorder, according to the World Health Organization. With high treatment cost and limited access to qualified therapists, employers, healthcare providers and insurers are seeking ways to help people manage their mental health and well-being through clinically proven, cost-effective and scalable solutions.
Wysa uses AI (Artificial Intelligence) to triage users according to their personal needs, guiding them through appropriate, evidence-based CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) exercises within the app, towards other mental health services or crisis support. Wysa’s platform provides employers and health services insights into usage rates of Wysa and digital well-being tools, while maintaining user privacy.
Wysa has achieved FDA Breakthrough Device Designation for its AI-based digital mental health conversational agent for adults with a diagnosis of chronic musculoskeletal pain and associated depression and anxiety. Additionally, clinical trials have validated Wysa’s efficacy and published peer-reviewed results show that therapeutic emotional bonds formed by Wysa are equivalent to human therapist relationships. The company has, to date, achieved a revenue-generating user base of over 4.5 million people across 65 countries. Clients include Accenture, Colgate-Palmolive, Aetna International, Swiss Re, the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK, and the Ministry of Health in Singapore.
Charles Antoine-Janssen, Chief Investment Officer, HealthQuad said: “We are thrilled to be part of the Wysa team. Wysa is developed in India and is marketed globally. The needs for Wysa are present all across, from high income to low-income countries. Mental health triaging of patients using AI which is fast, effective and non stigmatising for patients living in unaccepting societies answers a huge need in India, the rest of low income Asia, Africa as well as the wealthiest countries of the world.”
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“Wysa provides help across the care continuum – from the first point of access to digital therapeutics and companion alongside a clinician, to ongoing monitoring & routine management thereby democratizing access to mental health. FDA Breakthrough Device Designation status, user privacy further validated by Mozilla and real-time AI-CBT support makes Wysa one of the few clinically validated, privacy focused and personalized solutions built for global scale” added Ajay Mahipal, Director, HealthQuad.
Srini Nagarajan, Managing Director and Head of Asia at British International Investment added: “Good mental health is a crucial pillar for sound physical health which in turn promotes social and economic development. Through our investment in Wysa, BII is taking a holistic approach to supporting long-term productive economic prosperity by backing an innovative tech-enabled company that is increasing access to mental health services for low-income and rural individuals. We are excited to continue working with Wysa’s team to grow their offering and help improve health outcomes and quality of life for people.”
Ramakant Vempati, Co-founder, Wysa, said: “Wysa has not only been extremely successful as a consumer well-being platform but has also developed into a clinically validated, powerful tool to proactively manage mental health and well-being. Wysa meets people where they are, whether that means a little help with occasional workplace stress, right up to coping with debilitating pain, depression and anxiety. With this funding, we look forward to scaling-up further and helping millions of more people.”
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