livongo blood glucose meter
Glen Tullman
Glen Tullman

CEO: Glen Tullman
Based: Mountain View, California
Founded: 2014
Company website

The scoop

Livongo, a digital health company focused on chronic disease, runs a cloud-based diabetes management program based around a blood glucose meter. Offered as a contract plan through sponsors—a health plan, health system, or self-insured employer—the service analyzes a patient’s glucose meter data and provides personalized tips on how to better manage their disease.

What makes Livongo fierce

Diabetes technology has made enormous strides in the past few years, with several continuous glucose monitors and an “artificial pancreas” making it past the FDA. But the majority of diabetes patients do not use these “latest and greatest” devices to manage their disease, says Amar Kendale, Livongo’s senior vice president, product.

Livongo chose to build its tech around the humble blood glucose meter, a tool that most diabetes patients use to monitor their disease. Its connected meter automatically uploads blood glucose readings to the cloud, and patients may see this information online or through a mobile app.

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Patients have access to certified diabetes educators, who can work with them to bring their glucose levels down as quickly as possible. Livongo also offers unlimited blood glucose test strips as part of its program to encourage patients to check their glucose often without worrying about cost.

In November last year, the company added “over-the-air” updates to its meter, which allows the system to give patients feedback throughout the day, as well as enabling them to receive updates to their device on the go.

What to look for

2017 has been an eventful year for Livongo. It raised $52.5 million in series D financing in March and recruited Andy Page, the former 23andme president, in August. Page’s experience would be useful for a company trying to manage its accelerating growth and expand internationally.

While diabetes was its first focus, CEO Glen Tullman told TechCrunch the company plans to move into other chronic disease areas, such as hypertension or depression.

“[That’s] what we want—to empower people with chronic conditions to manage their diseases and to live the lives they want,” Tullman said.