Intellect Closes US$10M Series A to Scale Mental Healthcare Across Asia

ETC
  • Funding round is led by HOF Capital; new investors include Headline, East Ventures, MS&AD Ventures, DG Daiwa Ventures and Pioneer Fund.
  • Existing investor Insignia Ventures Partners and notable angel investors
  • Funding will be used to rapidly scale mental healthcare access, grow product, engineering, and commercial teams, and expand presence across Asia
  • Over 20x year-on-year revenue growth in 2021
  • 3 million app users and enterprise employee lives covered

SINGAPORE, Jan. 26, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Asia’s largest and fastest growing mental health startup, Intellect, today announced the closing of USD10 million in Series A funding, bringing total funding to USD13 million since launching in 2020. This is the largest Series A ever raised by a mental health startup in Asia.

Intellect co-founder and CEO Theodoric Chew
Intellect co-founder and CEO Theodoric Chew

The oversubscribed round was led by New York-based HOF Capital, and welcomed new investors including Headline, East Ventures, MS&AD Ventures, DG Daiwa Ventures, Pioneer Fund, as well as existing investor Insignia Ventures Partners. Other notable angel investors this round included Shopback Co-founder & CEO Henry Chan, Cathay Innovation’s Rajive Keshup, former Headspace VP of Engineering Neel Palrecha, Co-founder of US unicorn Forge Samvit Ramadurgam, Peak Co-founder Sagi Shorrer, Snap Inc. Director of SEA Anubhav Nayyar, Tinder & Match Group GM of SEA Gaurav Girotra, along with family office funds of billionaire founders.

“It is very clear that there is growing demand for mental healthcare in Asia that will surge even higher in the new normal. At the same time, existing mental health benefits and mental healthcare systems are under equipped to service this surging need at scale,” states Theodoric Chew, Co-founder & CEO of Intellect. “Intellect goes beyond supporting workforces, going deeper into our broader vision of building an entirely new mental healthcare system tailored specifically for Asia. We’re honoured to be leading this charge with the support of investors and partners.”

“To massively scale our offerings across Asia, we’re now hiring across our product, engineering, and commercial teams, as well as building our presence in key markets.”

The latest funds will be used to rapidly scale its offerings, team and expand across Asia, growing Intellect’s customers, and network of behavioural health coaches and clinical therapists. Intellect has over three million users, provider coverage in 20 countries, and is available in 15 languages. The funding will also be used to grow the company’s product offering to serve the entire spectrum of mental healthcare, from self-care programs to live counselling, coaching, and crisis management care.

Intellect also saw its year-on-year revenue surge by over 20 fold in 2021, with a major uptick in enterprise clients signing on to its corporate mental health benefits solution – such as foodpanda, Shopback, Singtel, Kuehne & Nagel, and Schroders, amongst others – cementing itself as one of the largest and fastest growing mental health startups in Asia.

These clients adopt Intellect regionally or globally, and achieve best-in-class employee adoption rates of 20 to 40% consistently, 10 times higher than traditional employee assistance programs and 2 to 3 times higher than other mental health platforms. Intellect also partners with leading insurers and global benefits brokers across Asia, such as Mercer, to offer mental health solutions on a much larger scale.

Intellect offers an end-to-end, 24/7 mental healthcare system in a single app. It has a mental health benefits solution for employers that features clinical-based digital therapy programs along with telehealth services, connecting employees to a panel of licensed coaches and clinical therapists within minutes.

The company also has a consumer version of the app which offers an introductory mental wellbeing platform, carrying self-guided cognitive behaviour therapy programs.

Along with driving wide scale adoption of mental health benefits across workforces, Intellect is also successfully driving a new market and behavioural change of first-time users and employees to a personal mental health routine in Asia, a region where mental health has been rapidly evolving but has been historically heavily stigmatised. The solution, while end-to-end and also covering clinical needs, has a significantly larger focus on the proactive end of the mental health spectrum to service the cultural nuances of Asia. This includes self-guided skill-building lessons and bite-sized ‘rescue sessions’ to deal with stressful emotions.

COVID-19 has exacerbated the global mental health crisis, with close to one-third of Asia’s remote workers admitting that the pandemic has increased burnout at work1. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), mental health issues cost the global economy USD1 trillion per year in lost productivity2.

Cognizant of COVID-19’s impact on the workforce, employers in Asia Pacific (APAC) are redefining employee care, enhancing their healthcare and wellbeing programmes, according to a Willis Towers Watson survey. Two in five APAC employers planned to enhance mental health services and stress or resilience management while a quarter will prioritise providing access to affordable and high quality mental health services. More than 80% of organisations have promoted EAP and online mental health services for employees during the pandemic.

Intellect currently has over 10 clinical studies underway in collaboration with leading universities and institutions, namely the National University of Singapore (NUS), King’s College London, University of Queensland and the Singapore General Hospital. Several of their studies show improvements in stress, anxiety, and depression levels of members who utilise Intellect’s programs. The clinical team is headed by their newly appointed Clinical Director Dr. Oliver Suendermann, formerly the Director of Clinical Psychology at the National University of Singapore, who is a recognised expert in the field of clinical psychology in Asia.

“We witnessed how impeccably fast Theodoric and the Intellect team managed to successfully execute their vision to build and scale their clinically-backed mental health platform across Asia at breakneck speed, through an extremely in-depth understanding of the space and region’s nuances. The need for mental health support is exceedingly timely today and it continues to rapidly grow in demand across the world. Intellect has grown to over 3 million users and now serves enterprises across 20 countries in just under 2 years. We’re very excited to back them for the long term as they continue to transform millions of lives through inventing a new mental healthcare system for workforces and individuals across Asia,” said Victor Wang, Partner at HOF Capital. 

1 https://www.peoplemattersglobal.com/news/employee-engagement/one-third-of-asia-pacifics-remote-workers-are-facing-burnout-microsoft-study-27128 
 
2 https://www.who.int/teams/mental-health-and-substance-use/mental-health-in-the-workplace  

About Intellect:

Intellect is a modern-day mental health company with a mission to make mental healthcare and wellbeing support accessible for everyone.

Intellect is the largest and fastest growing mental health tech company in Asia, serving over 3 million users and leading organisations globally, through our mental health platform.

Intellect was also selected as one of Google’s Best Apps of 2020.

Intellect is backed by leading investors including Insignia Ventures Partners, Y Combinator, XA Network, and an extensive list of family offices, big tech executives & renowned angel investors. 

[1] https://9to5google.com/2020/11/30/google-best-android-apps-2020/

[2] https://www.businesstimes.com.sg/opinion/as-the-pandemic-draws-on-mental-health-should-be-key-priority-for-singapore

 

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