NLP

Marigold Health Secures $11m in Series A to Expand Peer Support

Tech-enabled provider of peer support services to deliver critical care to the 94% of American adults with a substance use disorder are not receiving treatment

Marigold Health, the tech-enabled peer recovery innovator, today announced the close of an $11 million Series A fundraise. The round was led by Rock Health and Innospark Ventures with additional investment from the Commonwealth Care Alliance (CCA), Wavemaker360, Stand Together Ventures Lab, Epsilon Health Investors, Koa Labs, VNS Health Plan and KdT Ventures. Marigold is addressing a national shortage of SUD care by expanding access to high-quality peer support. Their proprietary peer support program combines one-on-one coaching from a certified peer specialist with 24/7 access to text-based support groups in the Marigold app, which is integrated with natural language processing that flags health needs expressed in chats and triggers additional support when needed.

The new funding comes after Marigold achieved significant milestones with seed funding in communities hit hardest by the Opioid Crisis. From 2020-22, Marigold conducted a pilot with a major managed Medicaid organization in Delaware and quickly grew to become the state’s largest provider of peer recovery supports. An outcomes analysis of 1000 Marigold app signups found that 98% reported improvement in at least 1 dimension of Recovery Capital, a clinically validated metric that measures an individual’s ability to maintain long-term recovery.

The Series A will allow Marigold to meet a national demand for more engaging SUD supports – their program is currently available to 25,000 members in Delaware, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts and Marigold is expecting to expand to at least 4 additional states by the end of next year.

Historically, most investment in SUD care has focused on the small minority of people already receiving and open to treatment” said Shrenik Jain, Founder and CEO of Marigold Health. “Generally, this treatment isn’t very effective – peer support is the unspoken reality on how most people finally get better. We’re creating a safe place for our members to empower each other and get the best out of a broken system.”

The company is currently prioritizing partnerships with Medicaid and duals health plans covering medically complex or vulnerable populations, some of who have joined this round. Marigold expects to continue its strategy of implementing a value-based reimbursement model for peer support, ensuring that improved member outcomes lead to less total healthcare expenses.

Aman Shah, VP of New Ventures at VNS Health, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit home healthcare organizations, and integrated Medicaid-Medicare health plan explains, “We made the decision to invest after seeing how Marigold engaged and reduced costs for members with SUD at other health plans. Marigold’s unique approach combines traditional peer support services with technology that is highly complementary to existing programs that engage individuals with substance use disorders.”

Arvin Grover, General Partner at Digital Health Venture Partners, added “Marigold can wrap around any existing treatment program to consistently engage members and demonstrate real world results.”

Investors were also compelled by Marigold’s technology platform – the company leverages proprietary natural language processing (NLP) to upskill peer specialists, ensure online interactions are constructive, and inform the efforts of other treatment providers.

Marigold’s team has a unique vision that involves investing heavily in their served communities and scaling the impact of their efforts through AI.” said Andy Palmer of Koa Labs.

Mark Legare of Innospark Ventures, a VC fund focused on AI, highlighted that Marigold’s platform is valuable to many stakeholders. “Marigold has built innovative technology grounded in direct feedback from health plans, providers, and peers to drive scalable impact.

Marigold has achieved impressive milestones due to a combination of community partnerships, innovative technology, and a commitment to real-world outcomes.” said Bill Evans, Founder and General Partner at Rock Health. “We are excited to support their next phase of growth.

In addition to expanding their covered population, Marigold expects to grow its peer workforce and continue to develop their NLP. The Company’s longer-term vision is to build a nationally distributed peer delivery model that can support a range of chronic conditions beyond SUD.

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