The internet ages with its users.
As the first digital generation learned the language of computing and online networking it created tools for every conceivable life event. On the Web these days you can plan for everything from having a baby to buying a car to getting into college and even getting married (and divorced).
Now, Beyondly, which does business as Everplans, is set to announce a $2.1 million round of seed financing from investors including: Scout Ventures; David McCabe, chair of the private clients group at Willkie Farr & Gallagher; and Mark Seelig, a founding partner of Meister Seelig & Fein; as it adds a professional service to its end-of-life planning site. The goal is to help Baby Boomers and Generation X face the realities of dying — and plan for it.
The New York-based company isn’t alone in attempting to get consumers to confront end-of-life issues. Its own site has a list of online end-of-life service providers ranging from the technologically savvy to the more down-to-earth.
Everplans has its origins in the chance encounter between Abby Schneiderman and her co-founder Adam Seifer — both active entrepreneurs in the New York City tech community — who were advising a young startup company.
Seifer had worked at sixdegrees.com, and co-founded Fotolog, and was looking for his next startup. He and Schneiderman, then in the throes of wedding planning, talked about how there were plenty of ways startups addressed the needs of consumers that range from germane to joyous, but nothing for one of the most important and certainly the most inevitable events in anyone’s life – dying.
Initially the company was a content provider with advice tips and a blog, but in the wake Schneiderman’s brother’s death in a car accident, the two co-founders realized the company needed to be something more.
Now Everplans is a site where people can not only read about, but create and save a plan for what should happen in the event of their death. The company raised its first seed round of around $1.4 million to build out its planning architecture. So in addition to information, users have the option to actually act on the information with Everplans’ preferred providers.
Anything from getting life insurance to drafting a will can be initiated through the company’s site. And now, with the launch of its premium service, thanks to the second tranche of its seed investment, users can actually store their information on the Everplans site.
“Premium members have the ability to upload scans of documents to their ‘Everplans’ and the ability to invite multiple deputies into their accounts,” Schneiderman said. Meanwhile, free accounts can indicate where important documents are stored physically and invite two deputies (think of them as executors on the Everplans site) to access their private accounts.
With its new cash in hand, Everplans is also launching an enterprise version of its product, which will give life insurers, and others the ability to offer co-branded Everplans services to their customers.
The service certainly makes sense to new investor Brad Harrison, whose firm, Scout Ventures, backed the company in its most recent financing. “It’s super fresh because we just lost my father-in-law,” says Harrison in a phone interview. “Having a game plan so that you know what you’re doing at every step of the process is really important.”