Jesper Buch who co-founded Just-Eat, the European company that took fast food online, has launched his latest venture: Mentaline, a platform for therapists, life coaches and psychologists to deliver services to clients.
Ambitiously, it’s not a marketplace in which sessions eventually take place offline but instead the whole thing operates on the Web. Users browse the site by specialism to identify the right therapist and then book and pay for an online consultation which is delivered via webcam. In addition, the system scales so that sessions can be delivered to groups of people or couples, and a separate section of the site is tailored to ‘Masterclasses’ or life coaching-style lectures.
In terms of model, Mentaline charges a 10% commission fee for each completed session, as well as a sign-up fee for those offering services. Buch hopes to take what he learned through his experience with Just-Eat, which he says was “not only about bringing fast food to the consumer, but also about the processes between consumers and suppliers” when moving online, and apply this to the personal counseling, coaching and psychologist consultation industry.
To-date, Mentaline is self-funded by Buch, a self-professed “millionaire”, to the tune of £300k, although he says the startup is in talks with a couple of London-based VCs. In terms of direct competitors, the most comparable is probably U.S.-based Breakthrough.com.