Exclusive: Karoo Health seeds $3M for value-based heart care
Karoo Health, an Albuquerque, New Mexico-based value-based heart care company, raised $3.4 million in seed funding, CEO Ian Koons tells Axios exclusively.
Details: First Trust Capital Partners led the round.
- New backers GoGlobal and Inflect Health joined along with previous investors Panoramic Ventures, FirstMile Ventures and several individual backers.
- Funds will be funneled into Karoo's launch on June 19 as well as supporting partnerships with health plans and systems and honing its technology, Koons says.
- Koons envisions the company raising a Series A of between $15 million and $25 million early next year.
How it works: Karoo supports patients on-site and virtually and contracts with cardiology practices, health systems and health plans to share in per-patient, per-month savings.
- The company's core aim is preventing emergency room admissions with low-touch interventions such as nutrition support and daily weigh-ins.
- Karoo's tech also provides insight into clinician performance, and the company shares in cardiologists’ bonuses. "We're only successful if they’re successful," says Koons.
Of note: The company plans to bill providers on a fee-for-service basis for the first six to nine months, track progress, and transition to value-based contracts starting Jan. 1, 2024.
- "It’s a pragmatic way to get started and help these patients now," Koons says.
- Karoo stands out from its peers by offering not just a portion of heart care but rather wraparound services, according to Koons.
What's happening: The company is currently partnered with 100 providers including 75 cardiologists in Arizona and New Mexico.
- Koons aims for the company to be in five states by year's end.
State of play: An aging population combined with patient and provider interest in shifting cardiac procedures to lower-cost care settings is underwriting growth in demand for remote and home-based cardiac companies.
- Remote patient monitoring company Hello Heart last summer amassed $70 million in Series D funds.
- Virtual heart health management startup Moving Analytics last summer pulled in $20 million in Series A funding.
- Wearable heart failure detection technology developer Cardiosense last winter raised $15 million in Series A capital.
What he's saying: Koons was inspired to start Karoo after his best friend passed away at age 29 after a heart attack — and although almost a decade has passed, Koons says the work continues to remain "super personal."
- "This couldn't save my friend’s life, but I’d love to be able to say we helped save your mother or father or best friend from this preventable issue," Koons says.