The website Crunchbase is well known for covering hot startup businesses before they hit it big. And this month they’ve turned their attention to the recovery, with a wave of new tech businesses now zeroing in on our industry. In fact, there are five current ones that are primed to make a big impact in 2021; all with their own unique slants on beating addictions.
The up-and-coming names called out by Crunchbase included Pear Therapeutics, Bicycle Health, Groups Recovery Together, Quit Genius and Monument. Interestingly, they all have a common thread in the fact that their key founders have some sort of history with addiction. That’s a good thing, in our opinion, as it shows that each of these companies have a personal investment in the cause.
The article also called out key venture capitalists who have a vested interest in the recovery mission as well. What If Ventures, for example, has been contributed funding to several of these orgs. What If’s founder, Stephen Hayes, spoke to Crunchbase about his personal connections to the movement.
“It took me years to get sober and turn my life around,” Hayes told the site. “Now I see a lot of founders sharing similar histories. While struggles around addiction are nothing new, there has been a shift in peoples’ willingness to both talk about their experiences and seek out better options. What I think has happened is the normalization of the conversation around addiction has freed founders who struggled with it themselves to go build in that space.”
Having successfully beaten an addiction himself, Hayes explained that he is very motivated to help others looking to make a difference. And that has now become a big factor in the way he chooses to invest in fledgling startups.
Speaking of the brands referenced above, they all sound quite promising. Pear Therapeutics, Bicycle Health and Groups Recovery Together all focus on telehealth and using virtual technology to get more people into treatment. Quit Genius (which has already secured over $14 million in funding) is geared toward workplace recovery and assisting companies who may have dependent employees. While Monument is focused specifically on alcoholism and has several digital tools to help curb drinking habits.
These all sound very exciting to us and it is encouraging to hear that recovery is on the minds of Silicon Valley’s best and brightest. We will certainly make sure to keep everyone informed as these companies move forward and (hopefully) hit the mainstream.