Mindfulness App Open Raises $9M in Series A

Image: Open

Virtual mental health and mindfulness app Open secured $9M in a Series A round led by Founders Fund and A.Capital Ventures.

A number of big-name Silicon Valley entrepreneurs participated in the round, including Twitter/Square’s Jack Dorsey and DoorDash co-founder Tony Xu.

Head in the Game

Launched in 2020, Open’s app features streaming classes with established personalities and instructors in the yoga and meditation space.

Providing three primary classes—Move, Meditate, and Breathe—Open’s modern approach to breathwork and mindfulness has won over users and investors. The new round brings Open’s total funding to $14.5M.

However, they’re not the only startup trying to establish a mind-body connection with users.

Battle for Your Soul

Finding widespread adoption as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 was a big year for the $121B mental wellness sector.

The success stems from a convergence of trends, both negative and positive.

Americans are more stressed than ever, with burnout impacting both employees and employers. A related development, meditation and breathwork sessions are on the rise.

While mindfulness app downloads have come back to Earth since the pandemic started, app spending is up 22% YoY ($154M through September), signaling that mindfulness of the digital variety has stuck.

Making moves, mental health unicorn Calm bolstered its business by launching nighttime meditation series Sleep Stories with endorsements from Harry Styles and LeBron James. Further, the company partnered with Lyra Health and Kaiser Permanente to enter healthcare.

Similarly, Headspace’s October 2021 merger with teletherapy platform Ginger has valued the new company, called Headspace Health, at $3B.

Takeaway: With a hot market and outsized competition, Open offers a modern take on the quest for inner peace.

The app also aligns with trends in self-seeking spirituality and acceptance. “We’ve left church, but we haven’t replaced it with anything,” says Open co-founder Raed Khawaja.

With the ability to invite friends to classes, a live chat function, and planned music label partnerships to bring tailored playlists to each class, Open is attempting to fill a void with community-based mindfulness.