Telehealth company MDLive raised $50 million in a crossover equity investment and $25 million in debt.  The Miramar, Florida-based company plans to use the funds to build out its virtual primary care platform. Like other telehealth startups, it has seen significant growth since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the first half of 2020, MDLive’s virtual visits were up 95% and total bookings were up by more than 300%. In particular, it saw increased demand for behavioral health visits — which were up more than 500% year-over year — and dermatology visits. At the beginning of the year, Cigna started rolling out MDLive’s behavioral health services to all of its members.

CEO Charles Jones said he hopes to reduce the cost of care using MDLive’s platform by helping patients access care earlier and steering patients to cost-effective providers and laboratory services.

“It’ll be a total health delivery system, not an urgent care telehealth experience,” he said in a phone interview.

The recent raise will help further that effort. Sixth Street Growth, the growth funding arm of investment firm Sixth Street, led the funding round.

“Virtual care has been a long-term theme for our team, and in an increasingly competitive sector MDLIVE stands out as a scaled and differentiated enterprise technology platform providing high-quality, convenient and cost-effective care,” Sixth Street Growth Partner and Co-Head Michael McGinn said in a news release.

Jones has also hinted at the possibility of an IPO for the company. Last month, he told STAT News that an offering could take place in January or February of next year.

Jones didn’t comment on the company’s IPO plans, but said the company plans to raise a sizeable amount of capital.

“There’s such keen interest in this area that’s actually been amplified in Amwell’s (IPO) that I’m very confident we’ll be able to raise that money,” he said in a phone interview.

He also said the company would weigh more acquisition opportunities in the future. While competitor Teladoc has had a steady beat of acquisitions, including its proposed purchase of Livongo for a whopping $18.5 billion, MDLive has stuck to its platform, for the most part.

“The industry is maturing,” Jones said. “We might consider acquisitions or acquiring mergers to fulfill this vision of total health care.”

Photo credit: CarlosDavid.org, Getty Images



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