Arli, an addiction support platform based in Sydney, has raised $1.9 million (AU$2.5 million) in seed funding; proceeds will be used for its expansion into the US early next year.
The seed round was led by Folklore Ventures and venture capitalists such as Antler, AirTree Ventures and Simon Griffiths of toilet paper maker Who Gives A Crap.
WHAT IT DOES
Arli, which has yet to publicly launch, offers free coaching and support to people who are experiencing any type of addiction at all stages of their recovery.
Having the option to stay anonymous, users can subscribe to a one-on-one coaching service or join a group of 25 peers who are facing similar challenges. The platform also offers resources such as in-depth audio lessons, expert advice, and recovery stories.
WHY IT MATTERS
Arli says it wants to change the way people dealing with addiction access and experience support. The platform will not require users to travel to meetings or get waitlisted for rehabilitation.
“As someone who grew up around addiction I understand how isolating it can be for people and their communities—but it doesn’t need to be this way,” Arli founder and CEO Sally Krebs said.
The company targets its US expansion in early 2022 where it intends to partner with rehabilitation centres for their patient recovery programmes, as well as scale its coaching programmes to reach more people.
Addiction-focused online support platforms have been gaining funding in recent years. Just this year, online alcohol treatment platform Monument closed $10.3 million in Series A funding, bringing its total funds for expansion to $17.8 million. In 2020, Quit Genius, a startup that offers a virtual coaching platform for people with tobacco, alcohol and opioid addiction, raised $11 million in Series A funding.
Workit Health, a telemedicine company providing online addiction treatment to patients recovering from opioid use, also gained funding in 2019. Proceeds enabled it to expand into other US states from Michigan and California.
ON THE RECORD
“With an innovative, human-centred approach to support, we’re providing people with a digital platform to instantly access support from a global community of coaches to foster connection and support for those impacted by addiction,” Krebs said.