BANGALORE: Silicon Valley based fund Nexus Venture Partners has invested $1.5 million in New Delhi-based startup Lybrate.com, which connects patients to the nearest doctor. The startup, founded by former Facebook data scientist Saurabh Arora, was previously seed funded by Vispi Daver, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, and Gokul Rajaram, who has played key roles at Google and Facebook and is an active startup investor.
Lybrate’s fund raise comes on the back of the startup launching an Android app, which looks to plug entrenched loopholes in the country’s primary healthcare system through the use of technology.
“There are a lot of gaps, right from finding a doctor to how to reach a doctor and how effectively a patient can present medical records. We are trying to address these issues through a mobile platform,” said Arora, who is also the CEO of the one-year-old Lybrate.
In the last 12 months, India’s $80 billion healthcare industry, two-thirds of which constitutes hospitals, has seen mushrooming of technology-led startups looking to provide patients with affordable primary medical care.
Many such startups are using mobile applications as their means of bridge building, buoyed by the growth in smartphone usage in the country. For example, the Lybrate app has a unique feature, among others, that allows patients to locate the nearest ambulance on their smartphone and dial for help.
The app, built on a cloud platform, also allows patients to store their medical history, giving doctors instant access to an important part of medical care. Critical information like past prescriptions, lab reports, blood group, and allergies, can be accessed by the startup’s ecosystem of over 1,000 doctors.
For patients, the service is free, while doctors have to pay a monthly fee to access Lybrate’s user base and other in-app services. Given that the healthcare industry has rogue elements, the startup is investing in data analytics to minimize such threats.
“A doctor can get his friends to upload glowing reviews of him or her. Analytics will help people get access to only genuine reviews,” said Sandeep Singhal, MD, Nexus Venture Partners, who has joined the company board.
The fund has over $600 million under management with an active portfolio of over 50 companies across technology, internet, media, consumer, and business services sectors. “We see a huge opportunity in improving access to healthcare using technology. Lybrate’s innovative platform and easy to use interface brings health at your fingertips,” said Singhal.