DocPlanner, an online medical and dental appointment scheduling startup based in Warsaw, Poland, has raised $1 million in Series A funding to expand its geographical footprint beyond the five European markets it currently operates in to five more. Investors in the round include Point Nine Capital, (DaWanda-backer) Piton Capital, local health tech fund RTA Ventures and local business angels. It’s the first VC funding round for DocPlanner which has been founder-funded up to this point so did not receive external seed funding.
DocPlanner claims to have established itself as the dominant player for online medical appointment booking services in Poland and the Czech Republic, where its sites have more than 1.5 million and 600,000 unique users per month respectively.
The startup, which was co-founded back in 2010 by Mariusz Gralewski — who also founded Poland’s largest professional networking site goldenline.pl – began operating in Poland, before expanding to the Czech Republic and Slovakia. It has also added Russia and Germany to its footprint. Now it wants to roll out further, with a plan to use the funding to expand to five more markets — “largely” in the Eastern European region, according to Point Nine Capital. As well as international expansion, the funding will be used to enhance the startup’s flagship product: its online physician appointment system.
DocPlanner consists of a group of country-specific websites, such as DrScore.ru in Russia, each providing doctors with an efficient, low-friction way to get their appointment books filled up: by making their appointment calendars available to patients so they can book open time slots or compare doctors’ availability to find the most suitable appointment. The system includes other convenience-focused features, such as appointment text message reminders.
In total, DocPlanner’s sites have more than 2.5 million monthly uniques, and the startup generates “significant revenues” — enough to achieve break-even ”if it did not want to grow fast and internationally,” according to a Point Nine Capital source. The startup claims to be the first service to introduce online doctor appointments “on such a large scale” in the five markets it operates in. It says it sees opportunity for its service in both private and public healthcare markets, noting that in some Eastern European countries, the public sector still doesn’t have an online booking system, which it views as a big opportunity.
“The funding will enable us to expand our services to new foreign markets and continue to rapidly develop and improve our flagship service, an online physician appointment calendar. I believe that DocPlanner’s approach to making online appointments with doctors will become a global standard. Our goal is to become the leader in the field of online physician appointment systems on every market we operate on,” added Gralewski in a statement.
DocPlanner enables patients to find great, local physicians online and book an appointment. Every month, we help over 2.5 million patients find an appropriate medical specialist in their neighborhood. On DocPlanner, patients have access to a rapidly growing database of over 430,000 specialists, and can then schedule an appointment using the doctor’s calendar. The number of physicians and patients using the calendar grows by nearly 100% every month! Choosing the right physician is made easier by real reviews and opinions...
Point Nine Capital is a Berlin-based venture capital firm focused exclusively on early-stage Internet investments in areas like Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), eCommerce, marketplace and mobile. The fund and its managers, Pawel Chudzinski and Christoph Janz, have backed a number of highly successful Internet companies such as Delivery Hero, Clio, Shiftplanning, Vend, Westwing and Zendesk from their earliest stages. In early 2013, Point Nine announced the closing of a new €40 million fund, Point Nine Capital Fund II.