Care-tech startup Kenbi raises €23.5M Series-A to scale its homecare network
Berlin, December 16, 2021 — Kenbi, the tech-enabled healthcare-at-home startup based in Berlin, Germany — announces it has raised €23.5 million to innovate and roll-out its tech-enabled care solution nationally. The Series A round is led by healthcare investor, Endeavour Vision.
Existing investors Redalpine, Heartcore, Headline, Partech and Amino Collective participate with the newly joined Mutschler Ventures and lender Silicon Valley Bank. To date, Kenbi has raised over €30 million and grown from 12 to over 300 employees (over 80% of which are female) since launching in late 2019.
Addressing the growing nurse shortage emergency
Despite more and more people requiring care, the number of skilled nursing professionals has been steadily decreasing due to the stressful conditions and paper-heavy bureaucracy associated with the profession. As a result, more than half of Germany’s 625.000 caregivers have quit their job in the past 25 years. The remainder spends 40% of their time tied up by paperwork and inefficient processes. Yet, one in two former caregivers declares themselves open to returning to work, if working conditions change.
Founded right before the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe, Kenbi has established a new standard of work in care. The startup employs a largely decentralized network of caregiver professionals, empowering agile teams through a modular app stack and efficient access to services and products.
Hiring skilled nurses in days, thanks to proprietary technology
Despite the deepening caregivers’ shortage, Kenbi has experienced a growing inflow of applicants. Across 22 care-hubs in three German states, more than 300 professionals have joined the start-up’s mission, providing more over 15,000 care visits every month.
A key enabler to growth and care quality is Kenbi’s proprietary technology. A range of modular apps across the entire value chain of caregiving streamlines back-office operations such as recruitment, onboarding, care planning, documentation, communication, training, and billing. “Every caregiver receives a mobile phone with the Kenbi apps. Our digitalization efforts improve hiring speed from six months to days, enable flexible scheduling, provide instant communication, and shorten care tour durations by 20%. During the Covid crisis, our technology freed much-needed care time and reduced unnecessary in-person contacts among team members,” says Co-Founder Clemens Raemy, previously founder of the Latin-American cab hailing app SaferTaxi.
Rethinking the fundamentals of home care
Inspired by her own personal experience growing up with a relative in constant need of home care, Co-Founder Katrin Alberding sought to provide a more human-centric approach:
“Patients value how our teams are highly local, accessible, and how they provide a one-stop-shop for their care needs. Healthcare professionals join Kenbi because we champion a real alternative to the old ways that have failed them by providing a tech-driven, autonomous work approach where small teams serve tightly-knit neighborhoods while being connected to a bigger infrastructure network,” she explains. “Our teams benefit from a tech-enabled service program that relieves them from administrative burdens and empowers our “Kenbis” to provide the best possible care. Flexibility is at the core of everything we do”.
Kenbi is approved by all healthcare insurances in all German states in which it operates. This means patients have their acute and long-term care costs covered regardless of the service of choice. All caregivers are employed by Kenbi, ensuring consistent quality standards and a collaborative development of tech solutions directly with the end user.
Series A to broaden the tech stack
The newly raised funds will be used to continue rolling out Kenbi across Germany, as well as broadening the tech stack: “So far our proprietary technologies have focused on internal efficiencies; recruiting, onboarding, scheduling, staffing, documentation, online training, and billing,” explains co-founder and CTO Bruno Pires. “Now we will zoom in on customer-facing innovations that go beyond the elderly target market, building a healthcare-at-home category for a broader population.”
In 2021, Kenbi tested its family app, giving selected relatives – or patients themselves – access to the services schedule, care reports, care network contacts and a marketplace to request additional offerings. In the future, the start-up will explore the integration of its home care services with modern care advancements, such as online pharmacy systems, nurse-assisted telemedicine models, connected home devices, and big data analyses for predictive healthcare.
Alexander Schmitz, Partner at Endeavour Vision, who joins the company’s board as part of the financing, elaborates, “the rapid development of health app innovations combined with regulatory changes embracing digital solutions (DiGA) are opening up exciting new opportunities for homecare in Germany that will fuel continued growth in a care market that already exceeds €50 billion annually. Through its scalable online and offline approach, Kenbi is ideally positioned to define that important market.”
“Kenbi is a successful example of how digitization combined with empathy can reverse some of society’s most negative trends. The deep respect shown by Katrin, Clemens, Bruno and the whole team for the needs of caretakers and patients alike results in a more fulfilling environment for everyone involved. Their sensible mindset, speed of execution and quality of technology will scale Kenbi far beyond Germany,” comments Christian Miele, partner at Headline and an early board member.
Founded in November 2019, Kenbi is a tech-enabled homecare start-up based in Berlin, Germany with a network of over 300 caregivers servicing patients across several states. The company establishes a new standard in providing holistic care solutions by employing a decentralized network of caregiver professionals and empowering agile teams through a modular app stack. With a modern take on care, kenbi provides efficient access to services and products such as household help, companionship, pet visits, basic physical care, as well as medical and specialized healthcare treatments. Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Katrin Alberding and Clemens Raemy met at Harvard Business School in 2009, after which they both pursued entrepreneurial routes in different industries before founding Kenbi, together with experienced CTO Bruno Pires. To learn more, visit www.kenbi.de