Sidekick Health nets $55M to bolster digital therapeutics programs

Looking to no longer play second fiddle, digital therapeutics developer Sidekick Health has set its sights on expanding its video-game-like platform to assist in treating people with multiple chronic conditions.

After collecting $20 million in late 2020, the Swedish company now has another $55 million in venture capital for its efforts and has outlined plans to build out its commercial footprint in the U.S.

Sidekick’s smartphone software combines artificial intelligence and gamification measures to reward beneficial changes in lifestyle, and it delivers users personalized recommendations in managing their nutrition, exercise, sleep, stress and medication adherence.

SidekickHealth app
Sidekick's gamified smartphone app ((SidekickHealth))

The company, which maintains offices in Boston and Iceland, has previously signed Big Pharma partnerships to provide complementary digital programs alongside prescription drugs—including in peripheral artery disease in the case of Bayer and for five inflammatory conditions for Pfizer.

Sidekick has also been working with health insurance giant Anthem to provide concierge services for people with Crohn’s disease and COVID-19 to help track symptoms on a daily basis. And during the height of the pandemic, the company helped the Iceland government remotely monitor people for worsening coronavirus infections.

After beginning with cardiovascular and metabolic conditions, Sidekick’s platform aims to reach at least 40 therapeutic areas such as oncology, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. It includes care portals that allow healthcare providers to remotely monitor patients and provide communication and support.

“The major challenge facing the world’s healthcare systems is how to support and treat people who are dealing with two or more chronic conditions,” Sidekick’s co-founder and CEO Tryggvi Thorgeirsson said in a statement.

“The cornerstone of Sidekick’s approach is our multi-chronic digital therapeutics platform, and this funding will allow us to scale even faster the production of a new generation of clinical treatments across all major chronic diseases,” Thorgeirsson added.

The $55 million series B round was led by London-based venture capital firm Novator Ventures with backing from Wellington Partners, Asabys Partners and Frumtak Ventures, plus an unnamed U.S. strategic investor, the company said.

“It has been impressive to follow the rapid growth of the company from the close of its A round 18 months ago,” said Novator's founder and general partner Birgir Ragnarsson, who joined Sidekick’s board of directors with the financing. “The company may have begun in the Nordics, but I am proud to say that Sidekick is now a globally recognized digital therapeutics player.”