Ora from Singapore takes a vertically integrated approach to telehealth

According to the founder of Singapore-based telehealth platform Ora, 90% of patients under the age of 39 are not being treated offline for their conditions. That puts the onus on Ora to make sure her patients, mostly millennials living in cities, have a good experience. Ora wants to act with verticals focused on specific health issues, such as women’s and men’s health and skin care. They also have an end-to-end platform that handles everything from consultations to prescription delivery and aftercare.

Ora announced today that it has raised $10 million in Series A funding, which Ora says is the largest Series A telehealth round in Southeast Asia. The investment was co-led by TNB Aura and Antler, with participation from Gobi Partners, Kairous Capital and GMA Ventures.

This brings Ora’s total revenue since its inception in 2020 to $17 million. Founded by Elias Pour, the former CMO of Zalora, Ora says it has experienced >20% month-on-month uninterrupted growth since its launch last year.

Pour told MinRegion that while working at Zalora, he saw “a very clear trend from customers investing in looking good, driven by fashion purchases that allow them to express themselves, to feeling good, which is related to physical appearance such as skin, hair, weight and overall well-being.” He looked for segments that were underserved and found a great opportunity in healthcare.

Ora founder and CEO Elias Pour

Ora founder and CEO Elias Pour

Pour added that Southeast Asia has one of the highest out-of-pocket health expenditures in the world, so it didn’t take a change in behavior to convince people to switch to direct payments. “People are already used to paying their healthcare costs out of pocket, which is appropriate for this category for DBC.”

Ora says it has delivered more than 250,000 doctor consultations since launching in 2021. It has an end-to-end model, which means it covers consultations, pharmacy, drug delivery, and post-purchase care. Ora makes money from subscriptions, with subscriptions accounting for more than 70% of revenue.

Ora is vertically integrated and currently operates three brands. The first, called Modules, focuses on online dermatology consultations and prescription skincare. The second, and Sons, provides male health care, and the third, OVA, deals with reproductive health care for women.

The platform mainly deals with a young clientele. The company says 90% of its patients come in condition first, are under the age of 38 and have never had online treatment before. Younger patients demand flexibility and speed, which is why Ora’s telemedicine model appeals to them.

Pour said one of the challenges facing health care providers in Southeast Asia is the “major gap between the patient population,” which skews young people, and the old experience of health care. He believes that in the next ten years about 80% of healthcare services will be brought online.

“Today, men and women in their 20s and 30s living in capital cities represent 36% of the total population. It is the fastest growing segment and is expected to represent half of the population in most markets by 2030,” he said. Pour added that Ora is “building a strong relationship with them at this early stage, gaining their trust and staying relevant to meet the care needs they will have as they get older.”

Pour said Ora stands out from other telehealth players like Doctor Anywhere, Speedoc and Alodokter because it focuses on specific health issues. Ora also combines prescription, OTC and strong consumer products to provide post-treatment service and clinical continuity.

Ora’s new financing will be used to expand into new markets and bring its brands to more than 1,300 stores.

In a statement, TNB Aura founder Charles Wong said: “[Ora’s] combined focus on specialty, and often taboo, healthcare verticals and a direct-to-patient approach has led the team to clearly differentiate itself while delivering market-leading unit economics that meet the tailored needs of patients across the entire value chain.

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