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Newtopia Announces $10 Million in Series A Funding

Filed in Press Releases by Newtopia on October 18, 2016

The Personalized Health Company Will Use the Funds for a Massive U.S. Expansion to Revolutionize Disease Prevention Programs in the Workplace

NEW YORK, NY–(Marketwired – Oct 18, 2016) – Newtopia, a leading personalized health company that uses genetic testing and behavioral science to build highly personalized disease prevention plans for enterprise, today announces $10M in funding led by a syndicate of U.S. and Canadian institutional investors including Bloom Burton & Co, an investment banking firm specializing in the health sector, through its affiliated Bloom Burton Healthcare Lending Trust.

Founded by entrepreneurial and health innovator Jeff Ruby, Newtopia plans to grow the team internally and aggressively expand its geographic reach in the U.S. to revolutionize disease prevention programs in the workplace. Its health engagement platform is proven to significantly reduce corporate health costs by targeting employees at-risk for obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke (metabolic syndrome) and deliver effective ‘n of 1’ experiences for lifestyle management.

“I founded Newtopia with one goal in mind — to transform the way businesses engage in employee healthcare and disease prevention,” said Jeff Ruby, founder & CEO of Newtopia. “This investment will be used to fuel our continued growth and industry leading outcomes in the health care industry and accelerate the deployment of targeted disease prevention solutions. We will continue empowering at-risk employees to take charge of their health and well-being while simultaneously helping businesses save on rising employee health care costs.”

Newtopia’s program has been proven to improve key health metrics and produce in-year savings in medical costs and ROI for employers by offering a hyper-personalized approach that includes key factors such as genetics, personality, motivation, and readiness to change.

“Our board is sincerely excited to move forward with the oversubscribed Series A round. Now we can shift gears and be completely focused on the business and partnering with our wellness community to exceed their goals,” said new board member Michael Weintraub.

Newtopia currently employs 50 and continues to grow the team aggressively in both New York and Toronto to accelerate its expansion in the U.S.

“This is a great opportunity to leverage our deep expertise in healthcare innovation, development and commercialization to help accelerate Newtopia’s growth,” said Brian Bloom, co-founder and president of Bloom Burton. “Their unique approach to disease prevention and engagement aligns with our vision in the corporate health space and we’re excited to continue working together.”

To learn more about Newtopia, visit www.newtopia.com.

About Bloom Burton & Co.

Bloom Burton & Co. is an investment-banking firm dedicated to accelerating returns for both investors and companies in the healthcare sector. Bloom Burton has an experienced team of medical, scientific, pharmaceutical, legal and capital markets professionals who perform a deep level of diligence, which combined with a creative and entrepreneurial approach, assists our clients in reaching the appropriate monetization events. Bloom Burton and its affiliates provide capital raising, M&A advisory, equity research, business and scientific consulting services, direct investing and company formation and incubation services. Please visit www.bloomburton.co to learn more.

My Aha Moment with Jeff Ruby of Newtopia #MaRSaha–– When his father was diagnosed with cancer, Newtopia founder Jeff Ruby realized that he was also at risk and the... Watch Now »

Newtopia Announces Executive Team Expansion In Anticipation of Rapid Customer Growth–– Newtopia adds five key hires to executive team and remains on track to hit 100 employees by end of 2016... Read Now »

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Newtopia Raises $2 Million, Uses Genetics to Reduce Corporate Health Costs

Excerpt from TechVibes Article by Techvibes NewsDesk on November 1, 2016

Newtopia has raised another round of funding.

The Toronto-based startup has raised an additional $2 million from Bloom Burton & Co., an investment banking firm specializing in the health sector, through an affiliated fund. Newtopia has now raised a total of $8 million in venture capital.

“We are thrilled with the support from Bloom Burton, an organization with deep expertise in healthcare innovation, development and commercialization,” says Jeff Ruby, founder of Newtopia.

The Canadian company uses genetics to develop personalized health plans and reduce corporate health costs. Newtopia’s enterprise health engagement platform reduces costs by specifically targeting employees at-risk for metabolic syndrome and developing a personalized approach to lifestyle management.

Employee wellness company Newtopia gets $10M to expand genetic testing and coaching platform

Excerpt from MobiHealth News Article by Heather Mack on November 1, 2016

Toronto-based Newtopia, a personalized health and wellness company, has raised $10 million in Series A funding to expand its offering of health management and coaching plans based on genetic testing and behavioral science. A syndicate of both US and Canadian investors took part in the round, as well as Bloom Burton & Co., which specializes in the health sector through its affiliate Bloom Burton Healthcare Lending Trust.

The funding will be used to hire more staff and expand Newtopia’s reach domestically by partnering with employers to offer disease prevention programs in the workplace. The company currently has a staff of 50, and plans to grow the team “aggressively” in both New York and Toronto, according to a company statement.

Excerpt from Betakit Article by Jessica Galang on November 1, 2016

Newtopia Raises $10 Million Series A To Help Enterprises Empower Employees In Managing Health–– Toronto-based Newtopia, a health engagement platform targeting the enterprise sector, has raised $10 million in Series A funding. The funding... Read Now »

Excerpt from Canadian Business Journal Article by Sara Sublousky on November 1, 2016

Newtopia Announces $10 Million In Series A Funding–– NEW YORK, NY–(Marketwired – Oct 18, 2016) - Newtopia, a leading personalized health company that uses genetic testing and behavioral... Read Now »

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Behavior Change – The Missing Ingredient in Disease Prevention Programs

Filed in Inspired Insights by Jeff Ruby on August 18, 2016

In 2009, The World Health Organization announced that 63% of all annual deaths are due to noncommunicable diseases1. We often refer to noncommunicable diseases (NCD’s) as “chronic” diseases. They are non-infectious conditions that progress slowly, last a long time and include; disorders of the heart and lungs, cancers and diabetes. In 2009, the WHO also declared most NCD’s are preventable via four lifestyle changes – improved diet, increased activity, reduced use of alcohol and reduced use of tobacco1.

Poor diet and inactivity were also listed as the major contributors to obesity –  a condition which itself increases the risk of almost every NCD and grossly affects health care costs. In 2014 the U.S. alone spent a predicted $305.1 billion on medical costs3 resulting from obesity and suggested more than half of U.S. adults are overweight or obese2.

With all the evidence clearly demonstrating high cost of disease, reduced quality and quantity of life and a clear link between lifestyle choices and disease occurrence, it is no wonder health related programs have hit the roof.

Over the past several decades we have been bombarded with schizophrenic commercial diet plans addressing eating, gyms and fitness studios targeting activity, ‘wellness’ programs focusing on one size fits all diet and exercise and even disease prevention programs taking it one step further addressing all four areas listed by the WHO.

However, despite our efforts and an awful lot of money being spent by employers and individuals; obesity, type 2 diabetes, most cancers, stroke and heart disease –continue to surge.

What are we doing wrong?

Behavior Change – The Missing Ingredient

We all know that change can be difficult. Take weight loss. Most people have an understanding that to lose weight, behavior modification in the areas of diet and activity are essential. However, how many people and programs address this properly?

Weight loss efforts normally look like this: a diet which severely restricts calories, hanging on as long as you can, seeing some results, a return to regular eating habits – because the caloric restriction was unrealistic, and eventually a return of weight.  Recent and tragic coverage of the ‘Biggest Loser’ participants over the years highlights the vicious cycle.

If any health goal is to be successful, what needs to be implemented is a solid understanding that while weight loss – in this case – is the ultimate goal or desired outcome, the true goal(s) involves the behavior change associated with the cause of the weight such as dietary habits, activity levels and behavioral issues. When these underlying behaviors are addressed, successful – which equals sustainable – weight loss will occur.

Some programs do recognize the importance of behavior change, however most still fall short in its implementation.

Assessing Readiness To Change

In the late 70’s, psychologist James Prochaska began exploring the elements required to successfully change a behavior. In addition to recognizing the importance of exploring barriers to change and having the resources, knowledge and support to change, Prochaska conceived the Transtheoretical Model (TTM).

The TTM describes 5 stages individuals progress through to successfully modify a behavior. Within each stage, different tools and strategies exist to assist the progression, making it critical to identify which stage an individual is in – because the approach will be different. TTM recognizes change as a process not an event and accepts that most individuals do not move through the steps in a linear fashion. Relapse is common and therefore understanding what might trigger a relapse, ideal.

Again, using weight loss as an example, a good disease prevention program first and foremost would identify the behavior changes required to reach the desired outcome. In this case let’s say, increasing activity levels.

The TTM then recognizes that not every individual is in the “action” phase – the phase where exercise is actually taking place and measurable changes exist. Instead it recognizes that some individuals may be in more of a preparation stage – one which involves exploring exercise programs, finding a good coach, buying a pair of running shoes or finding a buddy to walk with in the future. In this case by identifying which stage an individual is in – their “readiness”- , the appropriate coaching, language, motivation and tools can be used to push the individual along the path.

When the individual is supported along their path, appropriate guidance can be given so that the individual eventually makes activity part of their lifestyle – a true behavior change, not simply a 2 week all or nothing attempt.

In 2009, the WHO estimated 1.9 million deaths were attributable to physical inactivity indicating greater than 60% of adults do not meet daily requirements. During this same year the WHO estimated 2.7 million deaths were attributable to diets low in fruits and vegetables1.

In fact eating a healthy diet, increasing physical activity and avoiding tobacco use can prevent: 80% of premature heart disease and stroke, 80% of type 2 diabetes and 40% of cancers1.

When disease prevention programs focus their efforts on these behaviors, not necessarily the disease or desired outcome, and provide immediate evidence-based tools and strategies to match “Readiness”, only then can goals be reached successfully.

 

Newtopia is a disease prevention program which recognizes the importance of behavior change and implements tools and strategies to best match clients with their personal readiness. Learn more by subscribing to our blog.

 

References

  1. http://www.who.int/features/factfiles/noncommunicable_diseases/en/
  2. http://www.cdc.gov/media/pressrel/2009/r090727.htm
  3. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/2016/02/12/US-Obesity-Rate-Hit-Record-High-2015

 

 

 

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