Romanian speech therapy startup aims to raise EUR 290,000
VoxiKids, a platform dedicated to parents and speech therapists that aims to accelerate the recovery of children with speech and pronunciation deficiencies, aims to raise EUR 290,000 in exchange for 10.39% of its capital. The company's pre-money valuation is EUR 2.5 million.
Two local venture capital funds – GapMinder and Cleverage – will contribute with EUR 115,000 to this financing round, while the remaining EUR 175,000 should come from private investors on the equity crowdfunding platform SeedBlink. The SeedBlink listing will take place on November 3.
"Listing on SeedBlink is an opportunity for VoxiKids to become one of the leading products in the e-health market. We will add important functionalities to the platform, accelerate the marketing & sales area, and expand in other countries, like the United Kingdom and the USA. We want our platform to be used in as many houses, kindergartens and speech therapy offices as possible because the acquisition of language in early childhood is essential for the emotional and social development of children," says AnaMaria Onica, CEO and co-founder of Speakquest, the company that owns the VoxiKids brand.
VoxiKids was launched in March 2019 by AnaMaria Onica (36 years old), Cristian Baita (38 years old), and Adrian Enache (31 years old). It was launched as a mobile MVP (minimum viable product) - for iOS and Android- and currently has over 10,000 downloads.
"The idea to develop a product dedicated to speech therapy came up in 2018 when we were looking for a field where we could launch a startup that would be aligned with our vision and also have a major social impact. We started to research the e-health area, and that's how we found out that there are over 500,000 children in need of speech therapy in Romania, and globally, there are over 34 million children who are facing the same problem. Choosing to pursue this niche was also based on personal reason because I have unilateral hypoacusis, and it was easy for me to understand what these children are going through," says AnaMaria Onica.
In recent months, the entrepreneurs have focused on developing a SaaS platform that connects parents with speech therapists and makes possible online speech therapy. The beta version of the platform is currently being tested in 25 speech therapy offices and will be launched until December 2020. The final version of the mobile application will be launched at the beginning of 2021. The app will also incorporate an artificial intelligence module (voice processing) created in partnership with the Bucharest Polytechnic University.
The entrepreneurs aim for the product to be used in over 1,000 speech therapy offices in the next 12 months and to impact the lives of nearly 17,000 children in Romania. Thus, next year the company could reach a turnover of EUR 720,000 in Romania. The final version of the SaaS platform will contain 20 modules that offer: online therapy, specialized content (exercises, homework), administrative instruments (document management), communication tools (relevant notes), patient management tools (monitoring progress, adjusting therapy, evaluations). The team is also working on creating content for children with disabilities such as Autism, Down Syndrome.
VoxiKids plans on reaching the US and UK markets in 2021. The company's goal is to become an international leader for digital e-health solutions by 2023.
(Photo source: courtesy of the company)