U.K.-based healthcare appointment booking platform startup Zesty* has closed a $7.2 million Series A funding round to expand in the U.K. and into additional European markets. VC firm Innovation Capital led the round, with Qualcomm Ventures and Maya Capital also participating. Existing investors Mangrove Capital Partners, TA Venture and ABRT Fund also joined in.
The startup beta launched its booking platform in London back in May 2013, focusing on private and NHS dental services to test its business model. From there it expanded to include other healthcare verticals, such as private general practitioners; physiotherapy; osteopathy; chiropractic; podiatry; sports massage; facial cosmetics; and sexual health services — and to other U.K. cities.
It’s currently live in 15+ towns and cities in the U.K., and says it’s aiming to step that up to all “main” U.K. towns and cities by the end of the year. It has 3,500+ healthcare professionals signed up to its booking platform in the U.K. as of now (up from 2,000+ in April 2014), and says it has 40,000 users booking appointments via Zesty each month.
Its new funding will go towards accelerating growth in London, and for the aforementioned expansion across the U.K. It’s also targeting Western Europe — with a plan to launch in “major European cities” in the next 18 months. Zesty told TechCrunch its European markets of focus are: U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Holland, Sweden, Norway, Austria and Switzerland.
Other startups playing in what is becoming an increasingly targeted space — unsurprisingly so, given the size of the opportunity to serve the healthcare needs of an on-demand generation — include the likes of U.S.-based ZocDoc and Poland’s DocPlanner.
On the vertical side there’s also U.K.-based Toothpick (dentistry) and RightClinic (laser eye surgery and cosmetic treatments) to name two — with vertical specialists offering potential acquisition targets for any over-arching healthcare booking platform that can gain enough traction.
Speaking to TechCrunch last year, Zesty co-founder Lloyd Price said the aim is to build a search engine for healthcare services, and one which will allow users to not only locate treatments by speciality but filter by highly granular preferences, such as languages spoken.
Zesty’s booking platform integrates with existing healthcare providers’ practice management software using their APIs. But it also offers B2B tools to get an online booking system up and running for smaller practices — which might only be using the likes of Google Calendar or Outlook to manage appointments. Or even for those still using paper to manage appointments.
As part of the new funding, Florian Reinaud, from Innovation Capital’s Paris office, will join Zesty’s Board, alongside David Waroquier from Mangrove Capital. Miles Kirby from Qualcomm Ventures also joins as a board observer.
*Not to be confused with SF-based food delivery startup Zesty.