Telehealth is one of the healthcare services that has skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Initiated with the motive of providing easy care at home, telehealth services worked wonders during the pandemic-induced isolation period and helped contain the virus among the community.
Humans benefitted substantially through telehealth services during one of the most difficult times in human civilization and now that has extended to our beloved pets as well.
Pawp is a veterinary telehealth platform based out of New York, which is revolutionizing the telehealth space by introducing pet care to the arena.
Celebrating its first anniversary in September 2021, Pawp has already been named as the ‘Most Innovative Petcare Company’ in the 2020 BestMoney Awards.
While interviewing Marc Atiyeh, the CEO, and Founder of Pawp Inc., about the vision behind setting up the company, he said, “We founded Pawp to democratize pet care. Our approach is uniquely attractive to pet parents, offering one affordable plan that covers every dog and cat in the family. Our first-of-its-kind solution marries the power and accessibility of 24/7 telehealth with the guarantee of financial security, providing pet parents with some well-deserved peace of mind.”
Read ahead to receive more insights into how Pawp is changing the pet-care landscape.
Please brief our audience about Pawp, its mission, and the key aspects of its stronghold within the HealthTech niche.
Pawp’s ultimate goal is to help pet parents become more educated, equipped, and financially empowered to take the best possible care of their dogs and cats.
Currently, Pawp is the ONLY company offering on-demand telehealth via a 24/7 digital vet clinic and a $3,000 annual emergency fund so pet owners are never forced to make healthcare decisions for their pets based on accessibility or financial restraints.
Pawp’s mission is to make pet care affordable to everyone so that families can have peace of mind.
Tell us more about the telehealth solutions that give Pawp a distinctive edge to stand out from the competition?
Pawp is the first-of-its-kind veterinary telehealth platform that helps pet owners across the country by offering access to quality care and providing help to pay for it. Its 24/7 digital clinic is on-demand, meaning you can text, call, or video chat with a veterinarian any time of the day or night within minutes — no appointment required. Pawp members can ask medical questions as well as many other topics like behavior and nutrition. Pawp is also available 24/7 in case of an emergency.
If your pet were to experience a life-threatening emergency, Pawp also offers a $3,000 safety net for an emergency vet bill paid directly to the clinic, making it an affordable alternative to pet insurance. By increasing access to vets and helping to pay for them, Pawp uniquely addresses two of the largest pain points pet parents in the U.S. face today. One Pawp plan can also be used on up to 6 pets in one household at no additional cost.
As a seasoned business leader, what is your opinion on the effects of the pandemic on the healthcare sector, and what were the challenges that Pawp came across?
Many healthcare businesses and providers had to pivot and endured many changes as a result of the pandemic. One of the more welcome changes has been the rise of telehealth services. Humans have greatly benefited from the widespread emergence of telehealth and Pawp was perfectly positioned to leverage this familiarity and pioneer a new category for pets. We at Pawp believe that access to affordable, quality healthcare should be a rite of passage for pets and their parents.
Pioneering a new category comes with all sorts of surprises, but the company has experienced incredible growth in a relatively volatile period. The pandemic taught us to stay nimble and to adapt to circumstances so that we’re constantly iterating on our product and making it the best it can be.
With continuous development in technologies such as AI and ML, what is your prediction about the future of the telehealth solutions niche?
Practicing telemedicine 20-30 years ago seems like something out of the Jetsons. And telemedicine for pets? Almost inconceivable. We are iterating at such a breakneck pace that it’s hard to imagine just how much could theoretically be possible in 5, 10, or even 20 years.
The expectation is constant improvement. The digital clinic experience can only get better, enabling us to treat our pets from the comfort of our homes, knowing they’ll be just fine. We can already do so much, it’s exciting to think of the future. That’s why we’re investing heavily in our engineering teams so that we can continue to leverage thoughtful technology to both improve and extend our pets’ lives.
What would be your advice to the entrepreneurs and healthcare enthusiasts aspiring to venture into telehealth?
Telehealth is a great field to be in, especially post-pandemic. It’s also high impact and advances generally improve the world around us, which is as exciting as it is fulfilling. My advice to any aspiring entrepreneur is to stay agile and to stay hungry.
When a field is up and coming, it’s competitive. It’s not about being the first or the loudest, it’s about being the best. Make sure you have a product you believe in. Make sure you can make a case for it. If you can’t convince yourself, you’re not going to convince anyone.
How do you envision scaling Pawp’s operations and offerings?
Our goal is to always provide the most comprehensive care for your pet as possible and we know that definition will expand constantly. We as a company are driven by growth on every front: we’re always hiring, always looking for the next optimization or new tool that can make the product better.
Pawp wants to make quality vet care, and the means to pay for it, accessible to everyone and we’ll always find new ways to make that goal possible. Since our launch in September of 2020, we have already seen revenue growth of 5x in the first half of 2021 with projections to more than double by year’s end.
About the Leader
Before starting Pawp, Marc served as Chief Strategy Officer at Clarity Money (acquired by Goldman Sachs) where he focused on growth efforts including user acquisition, operations, partnerships, and marketing.
Prior to Clarity Money, Marc served as the Head of Growth at Paribus where he oversaw the growth of the company from 10,000 users to almost 1,000,000 in just 12 months, until Paribus was acquired by Capital One. Marc has also been involved in other industries including both ad-tech and venture capital. He’s currently an advisor for Nuvocargo and Cushion.ai.
A graduate of Harvard College, Marc earned his degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering. He graduated High School from College Notre-Dame de Jamhour in Beirut, Lebanon where he received the French Baccalaureate with the highest honors.
As a pet parent himself (a full-time dog dad to Chelsea, a Yorkie, and Fluf, a Chow Chow), Marc knows that access to vets and information you can trust can make a real difference on a pet’s health, and that pet emergencies often happen outside of office hours.
He started Pawp to make sure every pet has 24/7 access to quality vet care as well as help paying for it. Knowing how much his dogs mean to him, it’s incredibly important that Pawp realizes its mission in making sure no pet parent has to choose between paying a vet bill and saving their best friend’s life.