February 21, 2024

The demand for youth-mental-health services has grown fifteenfold in the past four years, a recent study by the mental-health investor Telosity found. And venture capitalists are pumping more money than ever into the growing pediatric mental-health market.
The sector has boomed over the past few years, thanks in part to the COVID-19 pandemic and a longstanding therapist shortage, both of which have made in-person therapy harder to access. 
At the same time, about one-fifth of children have a mental disorder such as ADHD, autism-spectrum disorder, disruptive-behavior disorder, or Tourette syndrome, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates. With millions of young people in the US dealing with mental-health issues, startups are stepping in to increase access to a variety of services, drawing millions from investors. 
There have been some startups that have received high valuations from venture capitalists in the youth-mental-health market: The digital-autism-care provider Elemy and GoGuardian, which monitors students’ online activity for self-harm risk, are both unicorns valued at $1.15 billion and $1 billion, respectively.
Akili, which uses video games as assessment tools for mental-health disorders, is another leader in the space. The startup, which has raised over $300 million from investors, went public in August via a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, merger.
Other startups in the space address learning differences, mental health for college kids, and mental health in schools.
With an analysis from GIMBHI, an organization that tracks investments in mental-health startups, as well as Crunchbase and PitchBook data, Insider found the 13 highest-funded pediatric mental-health startups. 
Here are the biggest startups in the space, organized from most to least funding. 
What it is: Elemy provides autism care both in person and via telemedicine. The startup, which reached unicorn status last year, also treats pediatric behavioral-health conditions. 
Total amount raised: $287 million
Investors: SoftBank, General Catalyst, Founders Fund, 8VC
Founded: 2019
Founders: Michael Ragheb and Yury Yakubchyk
What it is: Brightline offers virtual behavioral- and mental-health care for families.
Total amount raised: $212 million
Investors: Northwell Health, 7wire Ventures, GV
Founded: 2019
Founders: Giovanni Colella and Naomi Allen
What it is: GoGuardian monitors students’ online activity for self-harm risk.
Total amount raised: $200 million
Investors: Tiger Global Management, Sumeru Equity Partners
Founded: 2014
Founders: Advait Shinde, Aza Steel, and Todd Mackey
What it is: Hazel Health partners with schools to provide children with physical and mental-health care.
Total amount raised: $63.5 million
Investors: Bain Capital Ventures, Owl Ventures, Uprising Ventures, Hopelab
Founded: 2015
Founders: Nick Woods and Rob Darzynkiewicz
What it is: Cognoa is developing technology that can diagnose pediatric mental-health conditions earlier. 
Total amount raised: $53.9 million
Investors: Morningside Group, Stanford Technology Ventures Program
Founded: 2013
Founders: Dennis Wall
What it is: Limbix creates digital therapeutics that doctors can prescribe to adolescents experiencing mental-health problems.
Total amount raised: $31 million
Investors: GSR Ventures, Sequoia, and Storm Ventures
Founded: 2016
Founders: Ben Lewis and Jon Sockell
What it is: Mantra Health is a digital mental-health clinic for college students.
Total amount raised: $29.2 million
Investors: Global Founders Capital, VMG Partners, City Light Capital, Baleon Capital
Founded: 2018
Founders: Edouard Gaussen, Matt Kennedy, and Ravi Shah
What it is: Little Otter is a mental-health app focusing on children and their families.
Total amount raised: $26.2 million
Investors: Torch Capital, CRV, G9 Ventures, Vast Ventures, Palumni VC
Founded: 2020
Founders: Dr. Helen Egger and Rebecca Egger
What it is: Parallel Learning is a virtual platform for children with learning differences and their families to receive diagnoses, care, and support for developmental differences such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, ADHD, depression, and anxiety.
Total amount raised: $22.8 million
Investors: Tiger Global Management, Vine Ventures, Obvious Ventures, Animal Capital
Founded: 2020
Founder: Diana Heldfond
What it is: DotCom Therapy provides speech therapy, occupational therapy, and mental health services for kids via telehealth.
Total amount raised: $14 million
Investors: New Capital Partners, OSF Ventures, LRVHealth, HealthX Ventures
Founded: 2015
Founders: Emily Purdom and Rachel Robinson
What it is: Daybreak partners with kids, families, and schools to create personalized mental health programs.
Total amount raised: $11.9 million
Investors: Y Combinator, Maven Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners
Founded: 2019
Founders: Alex Alvarado, Luke Mercado, and Siddarth Cidambi
What it is: Hopscotch is a full-service telehealth platform that provides in-network mental-health care for children and teenagers.
Total amount raised: $8.1 million
Investors: Greycroft, Inspired Capital, New York Ventures, Remarkable Ventures, Watershed VC, Cold Start
Founded: 2020
Founders: Biju Kalissery and Marla Beyer
What it is: BeMe is a mobile mental-health platform for teenagers.
Total amount raised: $7 million
Investors: Flare Capital Partners, Polaris Partners, Peter Lynch
Founded: 2021
Founders: Mandeep Dhillon, Dr. Nicoletta Tessler, and Scott Cousino
What it is: Handspring Health offers in-person and virtual therapy for children. 
Total amount raised: $6.2 million
Investors: Newark Venture Partners, NextView Ventures, 25madison, Arkitekt Ventures, Quantum Angels
Founded: 2021
Founder: Sahil Choudhry
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