Blog Post

Time to Prioritize Preventative Mental Health & Wellness: Why We’re Excited to Back Unmind

Time to Prioritize Preventative Mental Health & Wellness: Why We’re Excited to Back Unmind
Investment / May 12, 2021
Written by , Andreas Weiskam , Annalise Dragic , Jane Lee

“As we enter the next stage in our journey, we’re thrilled to be joined by Andreas and the team at Sapphire Ventures – the shared passion to improve the lives of people around the world was evident as soon as we were introduced. There is an ongoing cultural shift – accelerated by COVID-19 – for organizations around the world to better support and empower their people to live more fulfilling and balanced lives. With the support of Sapphire and our other investors, we’re excited to further scale Unmind’s proactive approach, putting employees in control of how they measure, understand, and nurture their mental wellbeing.” — Founder & CEO, Dr. Nick Taylor

We all understand the concept and importance of mental health. However, for most of us, we’ve been neglecting it our entire lives. Over the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated these often overlooked and sometimes hidden issues as we are now experiencing elevated levels of stress, anxiety, loneliness and an inability to manage an increasingly strenuous work-life balance. 

Even before the onset of COVID, an estimated 1 in 5 U.S. adults were living with a mental illness, and 1 in 6 employees in the U.K. experienced a mental health issue on a yearly basis, costing U.S. employers $80-100 billion and U.K. employers $45-60 billion per year. All of this due to employee burnout, sick days and presenteeism (coming to work despite poor health and underperforming). One can only imagine what these costs have ballooned to during the pandemic.

While over the past decade the stigma around mental health has been fading as we’ve seen society embrace meditation and mindfulness tools, COVID and its impact has put mental health front and center for organizations. Through our own personal experiences, as well as witnessing the struggles of loved ones and colleagues, here at Sapphire, we believe that mental wellbeing needs to be openly addressed in the workplace and better tools, with preventative care at the core, are needed most.

That’s why, today, we are thrilled to announce our investment in Unmind, alongside our friends at EQT, Project A and Felix Capital. Unmind is a workplace mental health platform that empowers employees to lead more fulfilling and balanced lives. We look forward to supporting co-founder and CEO Dr. Nick Taylor and the entire Unmind team on their journey to improve mental wellbeing in the workplace.

Built on a foundation of preventative, holistic mental health care 

The company provides a B2B2C mental wellbeing platform that empowers employees to proactively measure and manage their mental health holistically through clinically backed assessments, tools, training and integrations to reactive care. On the employer side, organizations are able to analyze aggregated and anonymized data to make informed decisions about their broader human capital strategies, including workplace conditions and how those impact employee mental health.  

The Unmind platform puts prevention at the core of its platform, and we share the belief of the power of preventative mental health care. Deloitte U.K. published an in-depth study looking at the ROI of employer mental health interventions and through this research found that the average ROI is 5:1 for preventative support versus only 3:1 for reactive support. An analogy can be drawn to dental health with preventative health (brushing your teeth 2x a day) being more cost effective versus reactive health (dental procedure or surgery). Similarly, the Unmind platform provides preventative health focused tools to the entire employee base so that they can learn how to proactively manage their mental wellbeing. In the mental health space, Unmind’s platform is uniquely positioned to help employees (and their loved ones through their Plus One Offering) receive the right care at the right time. 

Incredible global traction and an ambitious, mission-led team 

Unmind has seen incredible adoption in Europe, and has expanded to not one but two international markets with people and customers (including Woolworths in ANZ and Uber globally) on the ground in the U.S. and Australia as a result of the platform’s popularity. We look forward to supporting the team’s continued success in the European market out of our recently opened London office and globally. At Sapphire Ventures, we partner with founders building companies of consequence on a global scale and Unmind is exactly that.

Furthermore, we are impressed by Unmind’s world-class team with deep domain experience under the leadership of CEO and co-founder, Dr. Nick Taylor. As a clinical psychologist, Nick witnessed first hand how the traditional approach to managing mental health has failed. As a result, he left the U.K. NHS to start Unmind. Together, with his ambitious and mission-led team, they have incorporated clinically backed research into the product, such as their internally developed mental health benchmarking score, the Unmind Index. We are also excited about the ambitious product roadmap and vision of the team to provide a holistic offering. 

By partnering with Unmind and backing their next phase of growth, Sapphire is excited to continue to build on our long track record of investing in category defining HR Tech and B2B2C companies including investments such as BetterUp, Convercent, Culture Amp and Degreed, and exits such as Jibe, LinkedIn and Livongo.

Sapphire is proud to partner with ambitious teams and companies we believe to be of real consequence. We are humbled by the ambition of the Unmind team to build a truly consequential company to make people’s lives better and are excited to be partners on this journey. 

 

Disclaimer: Nothing presented within this article is intended to constitute investment advice, and under no circumstances should any information provided herein be used or considered as an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy an interest in any investment fund managed by Sapphire Ventures (“Sapphire”). Information provided reflects Sapphires’ views as of a time, whereby such views are subject to change at any point and Sapphire shall not be obligated to provide notice of any change. Companies mentioned in this article are a representative sample of portfolio companies in which Sapphire has invested in which the author believes such companies fit the objective criteria stated in commentary, which do not reflect all investments made by Sapphire. A complete alphabetical list of Sapphire’s investments made by its direct growth and sports investing strategies is available here. No assumptions should be made that investments listed above were or will be profitable. Due to various risks and uncertainties, actual events, results or the actual experience may differ materially from those reflected or contemplated in these statements. Nothing contained in this article may be relied upon as a guarantee or assurance as to the future success of any particular company. Past performance is not indicative of future results.