Chronic conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease cost the US healthcare system over $500 billion annually. Beyond hard costs, chronic diseases exact a high personal toll on quality of life, compromising everyday activities that many of us take for granted. This is why we were so excited about Livongo, a health management platform that leverages technology to drive sustainable behavioral changes in people with chronic conditions for healthier lives at lower cost.
Livongo was founded by former Allscripts Healthcare Solutions CEO, Glen Tullman, in 2014. A year later in March 2015 Kleiner Perkins led the Series B. Livongo was the OnStar of diabetes, integrating hardware, software and services with predictive capabilities, analytics and services to wrap around the patient and create a different approach to care. It was so much better than the alternative available at the time —blood testing strips that were expensive and entirely dependent on self-directed patient action. Instead Livongo's solution enabled a diabetes patient to use Livongo's wireless-connected blood glucose meter to check glucose levels and, based on analysis of the results, receive personalized alerts, reminders and recommended lifestyle changes.
While diabetes was the logical entry point for Livongo given the disease's strong patient engagement curve, the team also saw the opportunity to expand from a single disease to create a broader platform addressing hypertension, behavioral health, diabetes prevention and obesity. The Kleiner Perkins network was leveraged to put Livongo in front of employers, payers and providers.
Today Livongo's client base, which includes self-insured employers, health plans, government entities and labor unions, is growing rapidly, and by March of 2019, it had 164,000 customers. Earlier this year Livongo partnered with Amazon to leverage Amazon Alexa's voice service and give patients the ability to ask their Alexa-enabled devices to provide blood glucose readings and health tips. As CEO Tullman says, "At Livongo, we're helping to make an important difference in people's lives every day. We built a system where 24/7, 365 days a year, anywhere in the world, people will have somebody to talk to within 90 seconds to answer their questions. That has changed the entire diabetes management system!"