The software aims to make senior living residents more easily connected and reachable by their health providers, families, and community managers.
By: Zachery Eanes
July 8, 2020
Raleigh-based K4Connect, one of the fastest-growing startups in the Triangle, said Wednesday that it had landed a large injection of cash from investors.
The money, which completes a $21 million round of new cash for the company, comes as K4Connect’s technology has seen a boost in usage because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The startup builds software that integrates smart devices and internet-of-things technology into retirement communities. The goal is to make residents more easily connected and reachable by their health providers and community managers.
Some residential facilities for seniors have become hot spots for COVID-19 outbreaks, which can be particularly dangerous for older people with pre-existing conditions.
In response, the movements of some residents have been restricted to prevent the spread of COVID-19. When residents can’t gather in dining halls or have visitors, technology can become a critical tool for communication between isolated residents and their family members.
“I think we have definitely gone from that nice (service) to have to a must-have,” the company’s CEO Scott Moody said in an interview with The News & Observer.
Moody said K4Connect’s software is added onto smart devices like iPads and Alexa speakers. The startup’s average user is 85 years old, Moody said, and about 85% of residents at K4Connect-partnered communities use their technology on a daily basis.
The company has grown rapidly in the past two years. The startup said in 2018 that it worked with around 60 retirement communities in the U.S. Now, the company provides service to around 800 communities.
Moody, who sold his last startup to Apple for $356 million in 2012, said now is the time to keep investing into the company’s growth.
“When you go into a crisis like this … there’s a defense element and there’s an offense element,” he said. “The defense element is making sure your costs are in line and things are being managed and people are safe at home.”
“The offense,” he added, “is how do we serve better and more?”
Moody said the new money will put the company on the offensive and “expedite a lot what we’re doing in terms of our product development.”
The latest round of funding for K4Connect was led by Forte Ventures in Atlanta, but other investors including Sierra Ventures, Intel Capital and Revolution’s Rise of the Rest fund participated.