Age technology is not only for the elderly. This is for those who want quality of life as they age. That’s where Prime Time Partners comes in.
The venture capital firm was founded in 2020 by Abby Levy, who co-founded Thrive Global with Ariana Huffington, and Alan Patricoff, founder of Greycroft Partners. For Primetime Partners, “age tech” can touch almost every sector of what Patrikof calls the “ageless population”: medical technology, fintech, consumer technology, support technology, and more.
There are currently 23 companies in Primetime’s portfolio, including: rocket dollarwhich helps people save faster for retirement through alternative asset investing; home care geniean insurance company that provides home care products; Aidaliwho helps caregivers find financial redress; Yes Rumor, concierge service for hearing aids; as well as Kindralaunching menopause-related products directly to consumers.
Primetime is also doing its own research on the older demographic, dispelling a lot of myths along the way. For example, there is an opinion that older people use the Internet less or are willing to spend money than their younger counterparts.
But according to Primetime, there are 50 million seniors in the United States, the fastest growing segment of the population, growing three to six times the rest of the country. Between now and 2030, between 10,000 and 12,000 people are retiring daily – and they’re spending money online. Among these retirees, 75% are likely to make a purchase online, and 44% consider the Internet to be their most preferred source of health information.
Impact of COVID-19
Primetime was launched and was preparing to raise funds just as the COVID lockdowns were in place in the United States. “Alan and I were on the phone in April 2020 asking if we should just stop there until there is better landscape?” Levy said. “I’m really grateful to Alan for saying that now is actually the best time to move forward and we basically made four investments while raising funds because we saw so many opportunities in this space.”
The fundraising was also fast paced. Most of Primetime’s first $50 million ($30 million) fund was raised in about a month and closed after three months.
Levy added that COVID has also boosted entrepreneurs’ interest in age-old tech.
“COVID has changed that drastically because every person in our country has somehow become a guardian for someone who was older or realized what it means to grow old in our country or in general,” she said, adding: “Frankly , entrepreneurs and founders all personal stories now, personal pain points somehow related to aging that have really been accelerated or highlighted during COVID.”
Levy said Primetime is looking for “companies that address serious issues such as social isolation among the elderly, retirement and financial security, as well as companies that address the fact that there are very few menopause products on the shelves that 50% of the population will experience it, including 50 million women over 50 in the US alone.”
For example, Catherine Balsam-Schwaber, founder and CEO of Kindra, told TechCrunch in an email that the company also wants to “de-stigmatize menopause and dispel taboos so that women feel informed, comfortable and empowered throughout the menopause.”
Primetime has also invested in a number of fintech companies, including those focused on liquidity, financial planning and retirement. These are questions that are relevant for any adult, regardless of age. For example, someone in their 30s or 40s may not only need to plan their own retirement, but also help their parents or other relatives.
RocketDollar CEO Henry Yoshida told TechCrunch that its average users are between 40 and 70 years old, which is a mixture of people who are planning to retire and those who have already retired.
Levy highlights the gender and age diversity of founders in Primetime’s portfolio. “I think many of these issues are central to women carers. In our portfolio, 10 out of 23 founders are women, but I want to emphasize that CEOs are women. It’s not just a founding member of the founding team, 10 out of 23 companies are run by women.”
The foundation is also working hard to attract older founders in their 50s. the stress of starting a startup,” Levy said. “We wish we had more, but we have four businesses that are founded and led by CEOs aged 50 and over, and we would love to have more.”
Limited Partners, Clients and Collaborations
Primetime works closely with portfolio companies to develop marketing and distribution strategies. Its portfolio is equally divided between the corporate and DTC businesses, with some overlap.
Levy said that when she co-founded Primetime, she assumed that there were only three types of corporate customers: insurance plans or payers; senior resident operators; and the government. But “as we moved forward, the industry continued to diversify,” she said. “Additional corporate customers are all hospital systems, then all risk-bearing organizations like Oak Street or Landmark, and employers, which also became another customer base.”
Employers have also become an important customer base. For example, one of Primetime’s employer-focused portfolio companies is called Empathy, which helps them offer bereavement leave.
Some of Primetime’s investments focus on the “sandwich generation” or people who care for both children and aging parents or other relatives.
“Family care is a very important topic in our country, especially with 50 million unpaid, untrained family helpers who spend an average of $7,000 out of pocket helping their loved ones every year,” Levy said. “We have about four companies that are involved in and associated with family care because we believe this is an amazing opportunity to serve this audience and they are a real resource and asset for all.”
Primetime’s limited partners include three nursing home operators and two hospital systems that are also helping the foundation conduct due diligence.
“What is interesting is that through our horizontal or interdisciplinary experience, we have become very friendly with other vertically oriented venture capital funds that are engaged in digital health or medical services, fintech, etc.” Levy said.
“We were actually involved in a lot of deals because of the collaborative nature of other funds saying, ‘Hey you guys are the experts in this field, why don’t you join? And if you know anything about venture capital, especially in today’s competitive environment, it’s very unusual to receive such an invitation.”
Credit: techcrunch.com /