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Health-tech startup Touchkin raises $1.3 mn from Kae Capital, others

Bangalore-based Touchkin eServices Pvt. Ltd, which operates predictive health-tech startup Touchkin, has raised $1.3 million (Rs 8.33 crore) from early-stage investment firm Kae Capital and a clutch of other investors.

The investment was made for developing Wysa, Touchkin’s mental health chatbot, the startup said in a statement. It didn't name the other investors.

Wysa is an artificial intelligence-powered bot that uses research techniques to be empathetic towards behavioural and mental health patients through anonymous conversations. According to the company website, the bot has completed six million conversations till now and claims to have 70,000 users across 30 countries.

Started in 2015 by Jo Aggarwal and Ramakant Vempati, Touchkin uses smartphone sensors to identify when a person may be in need of care.

The company’s indigenously built machine learning platform collects user data from mobile phones to track several aspects of a user’s daily life, including activity, communication and sleep patterns. It then analyses this data to identify important lifestyle or behavioural changes that could have a health implication.

“Our technology passively detects behavioural health issues from smartphone sensors and engages them through chat,” said Vempati.

In March last year, it had raised Rs 2.65 crore ($400,000) in seed funding from a clutch of investors. These included Alok Mittal, former India head at Canaan Partners; Amit Gupta, co-founder, InMobi; Anuj Srivastava, CEO and co-founder, Livspace; Himanshu Aggarwal, CEO, Aspiring Minds; Raghunandan G, co-founder, TaxiForSure; and Puneet Agarwal, co-founder, Money View.

Mental health startups have seen some investor interest of late.

In June, Wayforward Health Pvt. Ltd, which offers mental healthcare solutions through its mobile platform wayForward, had raised close to $1 million in angel funding.

In March, Mumbai-based Davman Technologies Pvt Ltd, which operates Juno Clinic, an online and offline mental health startup, had raised $1.2 million in pre-Series A funding from angel investors.

In February, InnerHour, an online psychological wellness platform, had mobilised $450,000 in its first round of funding from financial advisory firm Batlivala & Karani Securities and investment firm Venture Works, among others.

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