Health insurer nib (ASX: NHF) has put its weight behind healthcare startup Midnight Health with a $4 million investment, securing a 50 per cent stake in the medication delivery outfit launched this year by Search Factory and Brus Media founder Nic Blair.
Blair, who won the Australian Young Entrepreneur Marketing Award in 2019, set up Midnight Health and its brands Youly and Stagger to tap into booming trends of e-commerce and telehealth.
Youly was launched in February to fill a gap in the market for delivery of the Morning After pill along with additional women's healthcare needs, such as the contraceptive pill and treatments for thrush, HSV-2 and sleep problems.
The fast and convenient service is all about discreet access to treatment and prevention through patient-led digital healthcare, and is complemented by Midnight Health's men's health division Stagger which launched in August.
The group - founded in October 2020 - hopes to expand its portfolio of products beyond the current core areas of women's and men's health products, with plans to enter verticals such as seniors' health, gut health, cannabidiol products and other related needs in the coming months.
Blair said he was thrilled to partner with an established healthcare leader to help the startup continue to grow in an expanding market, also leveraging the relationship to gain access to nib's 1.4 million members to provide digital health services.
"COVID-19 identified huge inconsistencies in consumer demand for accessible healthcare and the current services and offering available to Australians," the Australian Top 100 Young Entrepreneur lister said.
"nib understands the healthcare landscape on an international scale and is committed to improving the future of this industry as technology advances and patient requirements evolve.
"From our first conversation it was clear that there was an alignment between nib and Midnight Health's vision to consolidate the fragmented healthcare industry through our patient-led digital healthcare platform."
nib managing director Mark Fitzgibbon said the deal would help bring to life elements of the group’s payer to partner (P2P) strategy.
"There’s a large marketplace for healthcare products and services we’re generally not able to cover through private health insurance so to this extends our reach. It also allows us to offer additional personalised support for private health insurance members," Fitzgibbon said.
"Importantly, it will introduce many young people to nib who may not yet be ready for private health insurance.
"Midnight Health have recognised the healthcare market is diverse and that consumers are demanding products and services aligned with their individual needs. And that increasingly, delivery will be heavily reliant upon digital platforms which know them and are easy to access and navigate.
"They already have more than 4,500 subscribers and we naturally expect this to grow with our close involvement," he said, although nib noted the purchase would not have a material impact on its FY22 earnings.
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