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Mobile Diabetes Device Maker Lands $20M in Venture Funds

InTouch smart glucose meter

InTouch smart glucose meter (Livongo Health)

7 April 2015. Livongo Health, a developer of mobile devices to help people with chronic disorders manage their conditions, raised $20 million in its second venture financing round. Funding for the Mountain View, California start-up, founded 7 months ago, was led by venture capital company Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, with participation from DFJ Ventures and previous investor General Catalyst Partners.

Livongo Health is developing its Livongo for Diabetes system designed for people with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The system includes a smart blood glucose meter that connects to cellular networks, and transmits data from the meter to family members, clinicians monitoring the person’s condition, and third-party diabetes counselors certified by Livongo. The meter also collects other data related to the person’s health, such as physical activity.

People connected to the meter can provide feedback to the individual via voice telephone, e-mail, or text message. Data from the smart meter are sent as well to a database in the cloud, where a rules-based inference engine analyzes the data and offers personalized guidance to the individual with diabetes and his or her physician.

The company says its Livongo for Diabetes system benefits health plans and employers providing health insurance to their employees, because it helps people with diabetes proactively manage their conditions, reduces absenteeism and presenteeism (going to work while ill), and helps lower health care expenses. Large self-insured companies including Office Depot and Iron Mountain, agreed to offer the Livongo system to their employers, as well as health care providers Mission Health System and HealthCare Partners for their patients with diabetes.

Livongo Health says it expects to use the proceeds from the new financing to speed adoption of its diabetes management system, as well as develop an ecosystem for chronic diseases beyond diabetes. CEO Charles Tullman, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and venture financier, started Livongo in September 2014, and soon received $10 million in first-round funds from General Catalyst Partners.

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