CEO of Spotify raises €60 million for his AI-powered preventive healthcare startup

The money will assist Neko Health in growing throughout Europe.

Venture capitalists recently gave their full support to preventive healthcare firm founded by CEO and co-founder of Spotify Daniel Ek. Neko Health revealed earlier today that it has secured €60 million in a deal that was led by Lakestar and supported by Atomico and General Catalyst.

The money will be used to spread the idea outside of Sweden, where the business is based and where it presently runs a private body-scan clinic.

Neko Health was established in 2018 by Ek and Hjalmar Nilsonne and is named after the Japanese word meaning cat. Its first clinic finally opened in Stockholm in February of this year after much secrecy. It was completely sold out in less than two hours, and 5,000 individuals were put on a waiting list. In a statement, Ek stated, “I’ve spent more than 10 years investigating the unrealized possibilities of healthcare innovation. “We are committed to creating a healthcare system that places a strong emphasis on patient care and prevention, hoping to benefit not only our generation but also those who come after.”

People visiting the clinic undergo a 3D full-body scan in a modern booth that would not be out of place in a Star Trek episode, which is equipped with dozens of sensors and is, you guessed it, driven by artificial intelligence. Particularly, algorithms are capable of quickly identifying probable skin problems and cardiovascular disease risk.

Additionally, patients have an ECG and laser scans, which take between 10 and 20 minutes in total (are patients still referred to as such in preventative care?). After the examinations, Bones may not personally meet with them, but a real, live doctor looks through the results and explains them.

According to Nilsonne’s statement to Bloomberg, “We have our own nurses, doctors, and specialists.” Dermatologists are on staff at our company just to analyze the skin photographs. On-site medical expertise is available for any situation that arises from a doctor.

Over 1,000 scans have been completed by Neko Health since the company’s start, and assessments cost €250. In order to secure follow-up scans after a year, almost 80% of clients apparently paid in advance.  However, only if the data are understandable, does AI hold significant promise for illness prevention and early detection. It is unknown how much knowledge Neko Health physicians have about how the algorithm generates its predictions (for example, which component adds to the risk of cardiovascular disease so the patient/client can be better informed about what steps to take).

Ambition and a purpose

Niklas Zennström, a co-founder of Skype and Atomico who will also be serving on the board, is one of the company’s backers. He is quite optimistic about the new endeavor from the person who fundamentally altered the way we listen to music.

“Neko Health is precisely the kind of endeavor that makes us at Atomico enthusiastic. It’s that uncommon combination of a company with a mission and lofty goals, and founders with a stellar track record,” Zennström remarked. “They’re solving a problem that we can all identify with, and it has the potential to fundamentally change the face of healthcare worldwide forever.”

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