A €30M Series A funding raise has been announced by the Berlin-based startup Formel Skin, a telehealth pioneer for dermatology.
The investment was led by Singular and Heal Capital, supported by Cherry Ventures, Heartcore Capital and Vorwerk Ventures, and will be invested in further development and expansion of the company’s digital platform for long-term remote skin care.
WHY IT MATTERS
As the founders announced in Sifted, Formel Skin aims to expand its business within the European markets.
Since its inception in 2019, Formel Skin has focused on establishing a digital remote care service for patients suffering from typical skin conditions.
After a comprehensive digital survey through photo uploads and questionnaires that consider personal medical parameters such as pre-conditions, nutrition and skin, patients are assigned to a practitioner who provides personalised care over the duration of their subscription.
The cost of this telemedical flat rate service is nearly €50 per month. So far, some private health insurers reimburse this medical and pharmaceutical service, according to Formel Skin founder Dr Sarah Bechstein.
Via their digital health platform, Formel Skin dermatologists prescribe products – gels, lotions or creams – tailored to the patient’s individual skin conditions. Pharmacies send the appropriate skin care products to the patient’s home. These may also contain prescription ingredients with particularly high efficacy.
The most common indications treated include rosacea, a non-contagious skin inflammation, acne and melasma, a certain type of skin hyperpigmentation.
THE LARGER TREND
Telemedicine treatments have spiked during the pandemic, especially in dermatology, where doctors are often able to assess and remotely diagnose skin conditions from their visual state.
Problems such as skin blemishes, acne, hyperpigmentation or slow ageing are therefore among the indications that are best suited and frequently requested for a teleconsultation.
Currently Formel Skin employs around 70 people in Berlin and has delivered more than 150,000 remote skin care treatments in Germany and Switzerland so far. Since December 2019 a total investment of €36M has been raised.
ON THE RECORD
Bechstein told MobiHealthNews: “The skin problems we treat are chronic skin diseases that require continuous treatment. First improvements are visible after about six to eight weeks. On average, treatments last less than 12 months, followed by so-called maintenance therapy, which maintains the improved condition of the skin. In the event of a relapse due to stress or other hormonal changes, for example, you can switch back to acute treatment at any time.”
“Dermatological conditions are often lifelong and require regular treatment. The current method for treating dermatology patients is broken”, stated Florian Semler, Co-Founder of Formel Skin.
He added: “There’s a lack of dermatologists and an unfavourable reimbursement structure throughout Europe which incentivises doctors to spend less time with patients that have chronic skin conditions. For those who can go private, it’s expensive and for those who can’t, there is a long wait. Formel Skin tackles these issues, by providing better treatment outcomes and making high-quality dermatology more accessible. “