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Kipu Announces Strategic Investment from TCV – Appoints Paul Joiner as CEO and Rick Pharr as COO

Company Poised for Next Growth Chapter As Market Momentum for SaaS Solutions Accelerates

Kipu, maker of the widely-used KipuEMR, an electronic medical records (EMR) system specifically designed for substance use disorder (SUD) and behavioral health treatment organizations,  announced the appointment of two senior leaders and a strategic investment from growth equity firm TCV. As Kipu embarks on its next chapter of growth, the company has hired Paul Joiner as its new CEO, and Rick Pharr as its new COO. Paul and Rick bring deep industry expertise, including scaling multiple healthcare technology companies to several hundred million in revenue.

Kipu’s EMR and other software and value-added solutions are utilized daily by leading operators in the substance use disorder treatment and behavioral health industry. According to a March 2021 study published in JAMA, hospital costs in the U.S. for treating substance use disorder (SUD) and related health conditions total more than $13 billion annually. The total cost of treatment for all behavioral health disorders accounts for roughly 5% of total healthcare spending in the US, representing over $200 billion per year.

“Kipu is the category leader with tremendous momentum,” says TCV General Partner Nari Ansari and a member of the Kipu board of directors. “The company’s suite of software applications intelligently leverages data in all phases of patient care, enabling behavioral healthcare providers to improve patient outcomes and drive operational efficiencies. Kipu gives caregivers on the front lines the capabilities they urgently need to care for patients, while also helping their organizations succeed. We look forward to supporting the Kipu team as they help a growing number of client partners manage the entire patient life cycle.”

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Paul Joiner is an accomplished leader in the healthcare industry who will join Kipu later this month. He comes to Kipu from Availity, a healthcare information technology network serving many of the largest and most respected provider and payer organizations in the US. As Availity’s COO, Paul was a major force for growth and innovation, nearly doubling the company’s revenue during his tenure. Paul served previously as VP of Corporate Development & Payer Solutions at Passport Health Communications, which was acquired by Experian in 2013.

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“The behavioral health industry is the latest sector in healthcare to benefit from digital technology,” says Paul Joiner. “I am excited to join Kipu and support their mission to deliver end-to-end technology solutions that enable providers and patients to communicate effectively and deliver the best care and outcomes. With TCV’s backing, and building upon Kipu’s market-leadership position, we plan to invest heavily to accelerate Kipu’s technology platform innovation and continue to develop fully integrated software applications to drive relentless, market-leading innovation and world-class performance for our customers and their patients.”

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Rick Pharr joins Kipu as COO after a successful tenure at WebPT, a provider of EMR and business management applications for the physical and other therapy markets. During his time as SVP of Operations, WebPT scaled to serve a client base of more than 20,000 clinics. Rick also led WebPT in providing exceptional customer experience, as evidenced by the company’s industry-leading net promoter score (NPS).

“Kipu has achieved significant momentum by helping customers deliver the best outcomes in the behavioral health field in recent years,” says Rick Pharr. “Having spent my career building businesses that focus on customer outcomes, I look forward to serving Kipu’s customers as they put the recovery of their patients above anything else. I’m eager to help the Kipu team take first-in-class customer experiences to the next level to become the gold-standard in the industry.”

TripleTree acted as advisor to TCV in connection with its investment.

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