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St. Pete healthtech startup RxLive closes $5M round

Veronica Brezina

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RxLive founders Kristen Engelen (left) and Mark Engelen. Photo: Propllr.

St. Petersburg-based RxLive, a provider of a tech-enabled marketplace of clinical pharmacists, has closed a $5 million Series A round – bringing RxLive’s total raised funding to $8 million. 

SpringTide, a Boston-based health tech-focused venture capital firm, led the round with participation from Cardinal Health (NYSE: CAH), a global manufacturer and distributor of medical and laboratory products, and a provider of performance and data solutions. 

“We’ve had an exceptional community of Tampa and St. Pete-based angels that helped us get started. We’ve also partnered with other local organizations, in particular, PAR, and they are a Tampa investor that’s backed us, and Seedfunders was an investor in our very early days,” RxLive co-founder Mark Engelen said, recalling how he initially met with the investors in St. Petersburg, drawing out his plans on a napkin. 

“This [the new investment from SpringTide and Cardinal Health] signals innovation is coming out of the city,” Engelen said. “With SpringTide and Cardinal, we’ve had a very defined fundraising strategy. We went to the JP Morgan Annual Healthcare Conference in January with a plan, and we have been building relationships with health care capitalists over the three or four years so we’ve demonstrated that traction of growth. And then when the time was right, we formed agreements. It takes a lot of work.” 

He explained how Cardinal was one of the first companies they connected with when he and his wife Kristen created RxLive. 

Today, RxLive is focused on building what’s called a population health pharmacy, where the organization is taking a panel-based approach to help these groups manage their thousands of patients as a global unit. RxLive uses predictive analytics technology that delivers concierge medication counseling to providers’ patients, such as predicting which patients are at a higher risk of going into a hospital based on their medication history. 

“The current pharmacy retail model underserves patients. The way they serve patients is a very volume-based approach to get as many prescriptions filled and out the door as quickly as possible, what that means is there are few opportunities for pharmacists to speak with patients to ensure they are doing well with their medications. Our mission is to deliver meaningful interactions between patients, pharmacists and providers through both our technology and clinical guidance,” said Kristen Engelen, RxLive Chief Pharmacy Officer and co-founder. “It’s really envisioning what a pharmacist can do for better health outcomes.”

RxLive offers: 

  • A data analytics engine that identifies patients who are most at-risk for medication mismanagement.
  • A telepharmacy platform that offers patients quick and convenient access to clinical pharmacists.
  • A proprietary medical management platform that has been custom built for the needs and workflows of the population health pharmacist

RxLive currently works with pharmacists across 30 states, working with thousands of patients on its platform. 

RxLive has a 12-person team that’s predominantly remote, but the executives expect to double its headcount over the next year by using the funds, which will also be used to boost marketing and its technology. 

RxLive is a member of Tampa Bay Wave and Embarc Collective. Additionally, last year, RxLive was part of Dreamit Ventures, an early-stage venture accelerator program in Philadelphia backed by local entrepreneur and Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik.

“We think St. Petersburg is one of these great, growing markets with an emerging tech ecosystem. We’ve been very fortunate to have been the beneficiaries of the community and think it’s an amazing place to recruit talent,” Mark said, stating that they may relocate some remote employees to Tampa Bay. “It’s been amazing to be one of the success stories in this space.” 

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