Excited to announce the $13M series A led by GV in Signos, which helps you lose weight through continuous glucose monitoring (CGM). Tau Ventures had first invested alongside Courtside Ventures and 1984.vc in the unannounced $4M seed. We are an AI-first fund in Silicon Valley investing primarily in seed and occasionally take later bets when we see immense promise. “Signos” has a number of meanings paying homage to the company’s mission. For instance in Spanish it means “signs” which evokes signals and communication to help you understand your body’s language. The company was founded in 2018 and impressed us with (1) a strong need, (2) building an execution-focused team, and (3) creating a differentiated product.
1) The Need
Losing extra weight is not the same as getting healthy but it’s often a significant component. And those extra pounds can be a struggle, as most of us can attest. In fact 75% of Americans are obese or overweight as is, greatly because we consume far more calories today than 50 years ago:
Technology can be a very powerful tool in any health journey — I speak from personal experience of having lost 35 lbs a few years back, inspired greatly by cofounding a digital health company myself. There are many tech-enabled solutions to help with weight management but few give users the ability to truly understand what’s going inside your body. Signos’s value proposition is that CGMs can give those data-driven insights, especially when you eat, exercise or sleep. A CGM may not be for everyone, for instance, anyone has needle phobia, but there are enough people out there who would use it. Maintaining your blood sugar within a certain range is key to burning and not accumulating fat. The company’s focus is non-diabetics i.e., the vast majority of us, with the view that an action today can prevent problems tomorrow.
2) The Team
We thought the cofounders brought enviable pedigrees but beyond that, commitment and focus on execution. CEO Sharam Fouladger-Mercer built and led a startup for 7 years and before that was an overweight child who grew up to be a college athlete. CTO Bill Tancer has dedicated his career to data analysis and is a New York Times bestselling author of “Click.” CMO William Dixon is an MD and Clinical Professor at the Stanford School of Medicine. CTO Pierre Wehabe was ranked first in the Faculty of Engineering and Architecture at his university. The company has also brought on board a Wharton MBA to run operations and a Georgetown grad with over a decade in marketing. One thing that impressed us immensely during diligence was the team’s ability to negotiate partnerships, especially with Dexcom, a $50B market cap company that is one of the leaders in the CGM space.
3) The Product
Ate a yogurt? Ran a mile? Took a nap? Signos quantifies glucose levels at the entirety of your life, giving real-time insights on what works and doesn’t work for your body. The product is most useful if you log your food too since you can then correlate output (your body’s glucose responses) with input (say, breakfast). But we see utility even without logging since just maintaining your sugar levels within a range, no matter the underlying cause, will help with weight management.
We are honored and excited to be part of Signos’s journey, using technology to solve a big problem. More at http://www.signos.com.
Originally published on “Data Driven Investor,” am happy to syndicate on other platforms. I am the Managing Partner and Cofounder of Tau Ventures with 20 years in Silicon Valley across corporates, own startup, and VC funds. These are purposely short articles focused on practical insights (I call it gl;dr — good length; did read). Many of my writings are at https://www.linkedin.com/in/amgarg/detail/recent-activity/posts and I would be stoked if they get people interested enough in a topic to explore in further depth. If this article had useful insights for you comment away and/or give a like on the article and on the Tau Ventures’ LinkedIn page, with due thanks for supporting our work. All opinions expressed here are my own.