Univfy Raises $6M in Series A Financing to Expand Predictive IVF Platform
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 6, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Univfy® Inc., a predictive analytics and machine learning company with a mission to expand in-vitro fertilization (IVF) access and affordability, today announced the closing of a $6 million Series A funding round, led by Rethink Impact.
The funding will be used to scale business by expanding the US national network of fertility specialists using the Univfy predictive analytics platform and developing additional partnerships with leading IVF centers. Univfy will also invest in talent to expand its world class data science and product teams and its client services experts.
Heidi Patel, Partner at Rethink Impact, will join the Univfy Board of Directors, which currently includes co-founder and Stanford University Stephen R. Pierce Family Goldman Sachs Professor Wing H. Wong, Apple's former VP of Retail James Bean, and co-founder and CEO Dr. Mylene Yao.
Launched in 2009, Univfy set out to apply machine learning, AI and fintech to empower the millions of couples struggling with infertility in this country by making IVF treatment more accessible and affordable, while maximizing their chances of having a baby.
Univfy's scientifically validated B2B platform accurately predicts the probability of IVF success, enabling fertility centers to provide a personalized IVF prognostic report to support patient counseling and customize financing and refund warranty programs that qualify over half of their patients.
"We firmly believe that Univfy is poised to transform and dramatically expand the IVF space. Rethink Impact seeks to partner with innovative companies building novel solutions that address critical problems and inefficiencies in healthcare through the use of technology and meaningful data," said Heidi Patel, Partner at Rethink Impact. "We look forward to collaborating with Dr. Yao and her exceptional team to deliver this technology to more providers to help individuals and couples have a family while also alleviating the financial and emotional burden along the way."
"Anyone who has attempted to navigate the IVF process knows just how harrowing it is — physically, financially, and emotionally. After years of seeing couples struggle with IVF, as a physician-scientist and Board-Certified Ob/Gyn, I was curious as to why some IVF patients had more success than others. To answer this question, I collaborated with co-founder Dr. Wing Wong and his team to investigate how IVF success probabilities differed among patients. That research work led to the development of methods for building and validating a prediction model for IVF outcomes that can be applied to any IVF center to inform patients' decisions," said Dr. Yao. "I am excited to partner with Rethink Impact, as Heidi and her team understand the critical impact of our work, and are passionate about helping people in their quest to become parents," said Dr. Yao. "This latest round of funding validates our mission and business model and will help us expand our reach to even more clinics across the United States."
Dr. Mylene Yao, co-founder and CEO of Univfy, is a board-certified OB-GYN, with over 20 years of experience in clinical and scientific research in reproductive medicine. Prior to founding Univfy, she was on the faculty at Stanford University, where she led NIH-funded fertility and embryo genetics research, and developed the Univfy technology with the academic founding team. Her co-founder and scientific advisor Wing H. Wong, is a leading authority on machine learning and Bayesian statistics, member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and is currently the Stephen R. Pierce Family Goldman Sachs Professor in Science and Human Health and Professor in the Departments of Statistics (former Chairman) and Biomedical Data Science at Stanford University.
To learn more about how Univfy is making IVF more affordable, and in turn more successful, please visit www.univfy.com
Over 7 million couples in the United States are affected by infertility. Approximately one million individuals or couples seek medical care for infertility per year, but only ~200,000 IVF treatments were performed in 2015, representing an IVF utilization rate of less than 3%, based on CDC data. IVF is the most effective fertility treatment for most couples, but high costs and a lack of transparency, keep many couples from choosing IVF over less successful options. In addition, over 60% of fertility patients do not have full insurance coverage for IVF, and typically pay more than $10-20K for one IVF treatment and over a third of them may need two or more treatments. Over 50% of women who try IVF for the first time, drop out after the first failed cycle, even though their probability of having a baby are high after two or three treatment cycles.
Univfy's predictive machine learning and fintech platform provides fertility patients with personalized probabilities of IVF success so they can make more confident treatment planning decisions. The proprietary technology, licensed from Stanford University, lowers the financial cost of burden to help increase access and affordability to the millions of individuals and couples that are affected by infertility, and has been proven to increase IVF conversion and patient retention rates at IVF centers. Fertility centers across the country are using the patented Univfy PreIVF Report and Univfy-Powered Refund Program to give individuals and couples the ability to afford multiple treatments so they can realize their goal of starting a family.