Insurtech startup Elma has closed a €3 million (~$3.2M) Series A funding round led by Mangrove Capital partners to build out a digital-first health insurance business starting with Spain, its domestic market.
保险科技初创公司 Elma 完成了 A 轮 300 万欧元融资 (约合 320 万美元)，该融资由 Mangrove Capital partners 领投。Elma 公司旨在从西班牙国内市场着手，推广数字化医疗保险业务。
Also investing in the Series A are a number of unnamed local investors focused on the healthcare space, along with Barcelona-based investor and company builder Antai Venture Builder (AVB), Arroba Capital, and US VC Joyance Capital Partners.
除了巴塞罗那的投资者和 Antai Venture Builder (AVB) ，Arroba Capital，US VC Joyance Capital Partners 外，这次 A 轮融资中还有一些专注于医疗保健领域的不知名的当地投资者进行跟投。
Elma’s co-founders — Miguel Ángel Antón (CEO), Albert Malagarriga (CPO), and Miguel Vicente and Gerard Olivé (also co-founders of its investor, AVB) — have a background in digital industries and startups, building “user centric experiences”, as Antón puts it.
Elma 的联合创始人——Miguel Ángel Antón (公司首席执行官)、Albert Malagarriga (公司首席人力官)、Miguel Vicente 和 Gerard Olivé (他同时也是 AVB 的联合创始人)——他们都有涉及数字产业和初创企业的背景。用 Antón 的话说，他们拥有 “以用户为中心的经验”。
Healthcare experience in the founding team comes via the COO who we’re told spent 12 years at a C-level position at one of the largest health insurers in Spain (now owned by Bupa). Elma also has a chief medical officer — who Antón touts as bringing a wealth of experience in “digital care”.
首席运营官把医疗相关经验带给了这个初创公司，他曾在西班牙最大的医疗保险公司 (现隶属于 Bupa) 担任了 12 年的高管。Elma 还有一位首席医疗官，Antón 称他在 “数字医疗” 方面拥有丰富的经验。
Since 2017 the team has been building a number of digital healthcare tools that can be accessed via an app. The idea is to entice subscribers to Elma’s healthcare cover with the promise of tech-enabled convenience and a shorter wait time vs Spain’s (free) public healthcare service for remote chats with doctors.
自 2017 年以来该团队已推出一系列的数字医疗服务工具，可以搭配应用程序使用，目的是为了吸引用户使用 Elma 的医疗服务。与西班牙免费公共医疗服务相比，Elma 提供便利的技术支持– 通过与医生进行远程交流，缩短等待时间。
It’s also hoping to disrupt legacy health insurance giants by offering slicker digital tools and services.
“Few companies or entities have had the opportunity to think about patient journeys and build and articulate a product that optimizes healthcare outcomes while controlling costs,” argues Antón. “We believe insurers have a privileged position to do that, yet they seem to have little incentive to innovate and adopt digital tools to make it happen given their legacy. We want to build a digital health subscription to better healthier, that includes insurance and is (finally) user centric.”
Among the tools Elma will offer subscribers initially is a telehealth service that lets members talk to a doctor via video call and chat, providing remote primary care and digital prescription (it has a team of seven doctors to serve that from launch) — and a doctor search engine for finding a medical professional to deal with a specific condition (it has a pool of 23,000 doctors in Spain for in-person healthcare).
Elma 医疗工具可以给用户提供远程医疗服务，允许患者跟医生通过视频通话和聊天，提供远程初步治疗和电子处方 (开始该团队会有七个医生负责这块业务)，然后从公司的搜索引擎可以找到相应的医生来解决患者具体的症状 (引擎中注册超过 23000 名西班牙执业医生)。
“We are currently working on a booking feature and integration with test providers to make getting blood tests, scans and so on much easier and interconnected,” adds Antón.
“We are one of the few insurers that provide a full online, comprehensive quoting system for people to understand our products and buy entirely online. These are just a few features that we are releasing with, but our vision is to pursue the digitalization of the industry to fulfil our mission. Prevention, promotion of good habits, digital therapies, are coming up next.”
On the prevention front, this being an insurtech startup, Elma’s roadmap includes linking insurance premiums to healthier lifestyles — via some form of behavior tracking.
疾病预防是 Elma 的发展方向，通过行为检测方式将保险费用与更健康的生活方式联系起来。
“Healthier people should benefit from their good habits and we are already testing tools that identify people’s habits,” Antón confirms, adding: “Other features in our roadmap for next year are integration with wearables, care plans, skin prevention plans, etc.”
The team will be launching its first health insurance product in Spain next month.
Its website already lists pricing for a range of plans “con copago” (which means there’s a monthly fee to pay for the insurance cover plus an additional fee when you access healthcare services).
公司网站已经列出了一系列 “con copago” 计划的价格 (这意味着保险费用按月支付，另外，当你使用医疗服务时，还需支付一笔额外费用)。
“We will have a full “sin copago” product in two weeks but we are believers of insurance with copayment,” Antón tells TechCrunch. “Being healthy makes you reduce visits to the doctor so you can keep your premium low and pay per use which will be best for our customers. We really love copayments…. Best way to pay less.”
Antón 在接受 TechCrunch 采访时表示：“我们将在两周内推出一款完整的 ‘sin copago’ 产品，但我们看好双重收费的保险服务。保持健康会让你减少去看医生的次数，这样就可以约下很多钱。
The Series A will be put towards scaling in Spain, which is the firm focus for Elma for the foreseeable future given a large addressable local market.
Some 10M+ people (~23% of the population) pay for healthcare, according to Antón, who says this is on account of long wait time for the free public service. A majority of those (60%) pay for health insurance via their employer — so Elma is focusing on selling in to corporates to provide cover for their staff.
Antón 称有超过 1000 万以上的人 (约占总人口的 23%) 使用医付费疗服务，这是因为免费的公共医疗服务需要很长的等待时间。其中大多数人 (60%) 通过他们的企业支付医疗保险——因此 Elma 正专注于向企业市场，为员工提供保险。
“We have an agreement with [insurance broker] Willis Towers Watson who will allow us to quote the most relevant companies in Spain,” he says, adding that it’s already signed agreements with listed companies (such as Masmovil, Red Electrica Española); startups (eCooltra); and state owned companies (Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat).
他表示：“我们与 Willis Towers Watson 公司达成了一项协议，该公司将允许我们对西班牙最有市场的几家公司进行报价。” 此外，该公司已经与上市公司（如 Masmovil 和 Red Electrica Española），初创公司（如 eCooltra），国有公司（如 Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat）都签署了合作协议。
“Healthcare is very country specific, that’s why its really hard to scale this type of company [to other markets]. So far we want to concentrate in Spain. The market here is huge, growing 5%-7% a year and needs a lot of digitalization,” he adds.
“We want to became leader in our market. In the future we will look for markets where our product fits the best, and it may be countries with or without a strong public health system. What we believe is true is if we make it here, where we are competing with an excellent service which is for free (Spanish public healthcare system), we can probably make it anywhere.”
In terms of app-focused competition, on Elma’s home turf there’s MediQuo, another Barcelona-based startup that promises to put a doctor in your pocket — via an app where users can chat to a medical “amigo”. While it’s not a fully fledged health insurance play pricing is low enough that users could combine it with legacy health insurance elsewhere — augmenting their usual cover with an up-to-date app supplement.