The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) announced on Thursday it has closed on a $250,000 convertible note to River Edge-based InquisitHealth, to help the population health/technology company further its mission of helping patients with diabetes, asthma, hypertension, and other chronic diseases overcome the social determinants of health and adopt healthy lifestyle changes through its peer mentoring program.
The funding was provided through the NJEDA’s NJ CoVest Fund, which is designed to help emerging technology companies bridge the funding gap between product development and commercialization, and further the NJEDA’s ability to support businesses throughout their growth lifecycle. InquisitHealth, which was founded in New Jersey in 2012, plans to use this funding to significantly bolster its workforce and impact in the coming years.
“Reclaiming New Jersey’s place as a leader of innovation starts with ensuring that companies like InquisitHealth have access to the capital they need to take their businesses to the next level,” NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan said in a statement. “Investing in early-stage companies not only helps these companies reach a global marketplace but also creates jobs and spurs opportunities for New Jersey residents.”
InquisitHealth trains successful patients as “peer mentors” to help those struggling with the same chronic conditions. Through its HIPAA-compliant technology platform, InquisitHealth deploys this distributed workforce of peer mentors to help health plans and health systems address the social determinants of health and promote healthy lifestyles. InquisitHealth’s more than 150 mentors have helped thousands of patients in over 12 languages and demonstrated significant improvements in clinical outcomes. Conditions supported include diabetes, pre-diabetes, asthma, HIV, and sickle cell anemia.
“We’re excited to increase our presence in New Jersey,” said Dr. Ashwin Patel, co-founder and CEO of InquisitHealth. “With the support of the NJEDA, we are expanding our partnerships with additional health systems and health plans to help them utilize the power of peer mentoring to improve population health.”
InquisitHealth currently works with clients such as Montefiore Health System, 1199SEIU, the Health and Hospitals Corp., Duke University, Atrium Health System, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Westchester Medical Center, the National Kidney Foundation, and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. In New Jersey, InquisitHealth has partnered with Trenton Health to improve the health outcomes of Trenton residents living with diabetes
The NJ CoVest Fund provides funding to New Jersey-based early-stage technology companies in the form of convertible notes with warrants, requiring a negative pledge and springing lien on protected intellectual property. No payments are required on the notes for seven years to allow companies sufficient time to grow. With a total funding pool of $3 million, eligible technology companies can receive investments ranging from $100,000 to $250,000. NJ CoVest funds feature three percent interest and 10-year maturity.
In 2018, InquisitHealth also raised a seed investment, of which $465,000 came from investors who participated in New Jersey’s Angel Investor Tax Credit Program. The Angel Investor Tax Credit Program offers a 10 percent refundable tax credit against New Jersey corporation business or gross income tax for qualified investments in an emerging technology business with a physical presence in New Jersey and that conducts research, manufacturing, or technology commercialization in the state. Applications must be submitted within six months of the date of investment.