Jesaja Brinkmann, Andre Sommer are co-founders of Cara Care.
Cara Care, a digital therapy startup that focuses on gastrointestinal issues, has raised $7M in a Series A Extension round. The Berlin-based company is looking to expand its app for IBS and move into the U.S. and other European markets.
Dr. Schar AG was a family-owned international nutrition and food company that makes products for people with celiac disease and chronic kidney disease. He led the round with existing investors Sabadell Asabys and Johnson & Johnson. Cara Care has raised $16 Million to date.
Jim Mapes was also appointed CEO. Mapes was previously an executive at several U.S.-based healthcare businesses, including Centauri Health Solutions, UnitedHealth Group’s Optum division, and Anthem, the health insurance company. Jesaja, 30, and Andre Sommer (34), who co-founded the business in 2016, will be the managing directors. Brinkmann graduated from the 2021 Forbes 30 under 30 Healthcare and Science List.
Philipp Schoeller, Dr. Schar AG CEO, stated that the Dr. Schar family has worked for over 100 years to help people with special dietary requirements live better lives. We have found a partner in Cara Care who can help us make this mission more successful by using the most innovative technologies. We are very excited to work with the team, and Jim Mapes is an excellent addition in the management.
Patients sign up for Cara Care to receive a customized program that addresses their specific needs. This includes coaching, dietary, mental, and exercise interventions.
Brinkmann said that the app has close to 1 million users. They use it to treat various conditions, including acid reflux and irritable bowel syndrome. According to him, most users are found organically through Google and the Apple app store, where Cara Care is rated 4.8 stars. Brinkmann says, “we have been in the market for quite some years now, around six years, and we have established a good reputation.”
Healthcare professionals can also recommend patients use the app. The 12-week Cara Care program can be reimbursed by German health insurance. Brinkmann says that one of our core principles is to focus on the foundations of evidence-based medicine. This means that we constantly evaluate the effectiveness of the solutions and interventions we provide to our patients.
Cara Care will be able to increase the commercialization of its app and expand into other European countries. It will also be able to add a team to the United States to grow its company footprint.
“There’s an opportunity to create something in digital healthcare, to empower patients suffering from digestive problems, to guide them through all the options and ultimately make them healthier,” Sommer says. Sommer says that this is ultimately our company’s mission.