Much of Rise CEO Suneel Gupta and One Medical CEO Tom Lee’s first interactions happened in front of a whiteboard at the One Medical offices after the pair were introduced by mutual investor Google Ventures.
“I was very much interested in what the patient experience was happening behind the scenes,” Gupta said. “They were interested in what was happening behind the scenes for our member experience. It was a lot of sharing ideas, using a whiteboard, sharing it at the One Medical office. That evolved into, let’s continue talking, see if there’s something we can work on together.”
And it did. One Medical today said it was acquiring Rise, a service that connects users with diet coaches. According to the Wall Street Journal, the acquisition price was $20 million. Rise had raised $4 million in venture financing prior to being acquired by One Medical from investors like Google Ventures, Greylock Partners and Cowboy Ventures.
Rise’s goal is to lower the cost of a personal nutritionist and trainer using technology. The company offers a range of diet-coaching services, from a $9 per month messaging product for diet maintenance to a one-on-one coaching experience for $50 per month.
The company has certainly been busy. In August, Rise said it had hit $1 million in revenue run-rate in its first year of operation. It also acquired HealthyOut, which uses machine learning to browse menus of nearby restaurants to give recommendations on the best healthy food options for different kinds of diets.
Rise will continue to operate as-is, Gupta said, saying there was “a lot of exciting potential for us to work together to reach more people.” Gupta wouldn’t dig into any details, but said that both Rise and One Medical have fast-moving cultures — implying that anything new integrating between the two would likely come sooner, rather than later.
“I think it could expose us to new users, Rise has been growing quickly, we’ve tripled our member base over the past year, but One Medical is also growing quickly,” Gupta said. “They had their biggest growth year in 2015, they added 80,000 new patients. You have two companies with strong growth trajectories. It’s exciting to us how we continue growing both road maps and both growth curves.”
With the nutrition space becoming crowded, Gupta said this also offered an opportunity to differentiate itself from other services on the market. There are other nutrition-tracking apps like MyFitnessPal, but Rise’s goal is to be more personalized — something that it hopes to continue pressing while part of One Medical. Getting acquired also gives the company more resources and an opportunity to focus, Gupta said.
“I think it’s actually a big step forward for our ability to compete in the market and offer the best possible service,” he said. “For us we see One Medical as a leader in primary care, with a total focus on user experience and a healthy amount of funding to really invest in making peoples’ lives better. For us, we are predominantly a product development team, and now we get to focus on what we do best, which is product development.”
Rise co-founders Gupta and Stuart Parmenter will still be running Rise within One Medical, Gupta said.
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