This morning, senior care online marketplace Kindly Care announced that it has brought in $5.4 million in a Series A financing round led by Javelin Venture Partners. The company plans to use the money to expand the product offerings and support national expansion.
The service offers an alternative to going through a traditional home agency. Instead, customers can use the platform to search for caregivers that have already undergone background checks. Part of the idea is take some of the logistical burden off of families which includes helping with tax requirements and payroll.
“Hiring a private caregiver is incredibly hard. There are numerous labor and tax regulations to consider, as well as challenges like vetting and staffing to overcome. But outsourcing the care to agencies is far too expensive for many people. Kindly Care's platform allows families to enjoy the best of both worlds — convenience, safety and compliance of agencies and the savings and control of the private hire model,” Alex Gurevich, managing director at Javelin Venture Partners, who will be joining Kindly Care’s board of directors, said in a statement.
Seniors and their families can look at caregivers' profiles on the platform then bring them in for an in-person interview. In addition to the caregivers credentials, their profile includes a video. It is up to the family and caregiver to negotiate an hourly rate. After this the platform can set up a payroll. The platform also has the ability to keep track of a patient’s specific physical or mental needs.
This latest funding announcement brings the San Francisco-startup’s total funding to $9.5 million. In 2016 the company landed $3.1 million in seed funding.
“When we started this journey four years ago, we were confident there were millions of families who were paying their caregivers under the table, and who would be willing to formalize those relationships if there was an easy to use framework that ensured compliance with all labor and tax regulations,” cofounder and CEO Igor Lebovic said in a statement. “We're excited to see that our product is resonating with families and caregivers."
Digitally-enabled home care has proven both a popular space for entrepreneurs and a tumultuous one. While one company, Home Hero, was forced to pivot out of the space last year, another, CareLinx, was able to get acquired in September by a larger firm. A third, London-based Cera, is currently facing allegations of forging online reviews and lying about partnerships. One of the best-funded startups in the space, Honor, raised $50 million in May bringing its total funding to $115 million.