Toronto-based virtual care provider Maple has acquired Wello, a Calgary-based company that also provides virtual care for employees.
Incorporated in 2017, Wello provides virtual doctor appointments through employer programs. It offers on-demand phone or video calls across Canada, as well as on-call support for urgent care after working hours.
Co-founded in 2015 by CEO Brett Belchetz, a former emergency-room doctor, Maple has developed a digital healthcare platform that aims to deliver timely and convenient access to healthcare providers.
Its product enables patients to connect directly with medical care specialists through their smartphone or computer. Maple also provides custom solutions for employers, insurers, hospitals, and clinics. The acquisition of Wello expands the employee side of Maple’s business.
Wello claims a customer base of over 350 companies, ranging from Fortune 100 companies to small businesses. In partnership with the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) in 2020, Wello offered RBC small business clients access to its telemedicine platform at no charge for 60 days.
Prior to its acquisition, the brand was managed by INLIV Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Coril Holdings Ltd. Headquartered in Calgary, Coril is a privately-owned parent company to a number of brands operating in the health and wellness; real estate; and railway industries.
Wello is set to be combined with Maple moving forward. BetaKit has reached out to the company for more details on the financial and operational terms of the deal.
Coril Holdings executive vice president Mike Mannix said the acquisition builds on Maple’s success in the virtual care space, adding that it also results in a stronger combined company with an expanded suite of healthcare and mental health solutions.
Loblaw-backed Maple offers a wide variety of virtual care services and expanded into the mental health space last year. Dubbed ‘Mind by Maple,’ the solution provides employees with holistic mental healthcare, including self-service and healthcare provider-guided solutions to improve their mental health and well-being.
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Shoppers Drug Mart, a Loblaw subsidiary, took a minority stake in Maple in September 2020, in a $75 million CAD round. Maple also began working with Shoppers Drug Mart to develop new programs to improve in-person and virtual healthcare.
At the beginning of last year, The Globe and Mail also reported that Maple had hired TD Securities, RBC Capital Markets, and CIBC World Markets to lead an “expected” $100 million initial public offering (IPO) on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX).
Later, Maple CEO Belchetz told BetaKit, while Maple “seriously considered” going public, the startup had not filed for an IPO, declining to comment on whether the company has hired the reported underwriters.
The CEO noted that Maple has its sights set on expanding beyond reactive care to proactive virtual care, such as supporting patients with chronic conditions before their needs become urgent.