Lumo Bodytech raises $10M to support expansion with employer wellness, physical therapy partners

The wearables company that has produced sensors to assess and correct posture and optimize running performance.

A wearables company that has focused on producing sensors to assess and correct posture and optimize running performance has raised a $10 million Series B round, according to a company statement. The funding will be used to support its expansion with business to business partners in employer wellness, workplace safety and physical therapy.

It will also support a technology platform for business to business partners. It is also partnering with companies with which it can integrate its sensor technology, such as sports apparel and running shoes.

In a phone interview, Lumo Bodytech Co-Founder and CEO Monisha Perkash said the financing will be used to support product development among other areas. It plans to add at least eight staff across sales, marketing and product development.

Until recently, the company has embraced a direct to consumer strategy, but it sees a lot of opportunity to diversify its business with corporate partners.

Perkash said its Lumo Lift product is geared to improving posture, particularly to prevent back pain — the second most common reason people go to the doctor and the most common source of workplace injury claims for people under 45 years old. It has developed employer wellness partners that use Lumo Lift as well as standing desk manufacturer Workrite Ergonomics. It has also partnered with technology company Validic to aggregate data from devices so the data can be viewed in context with other activities.

“Our sensors can be embedded in a variety of form factors  such as shirts, shorts, belts, and eyewear,” she said. It also comes with an app for iOS and Android networks. When users slouch, the sensor vibrates.

WuXi Healthcare Ventures led the investment round, and other new investors included MAS Holdings, and SanDisk founder Eli Harari. The investment is part of a broader shift for WuXi, the corporate venture arm of China-based WuXi App Tech. It has previously focused mainly on life science investments. WuXi Healthcare also took part in 23andMe’s Series E round earlier this year.

Perkash noted that its Lumo Run shorts with embedded sensors and apps for iOS and Android networks are available in pre-order. The sensors use algorithms to provide a detailed picture of the user’s running mechanics such as vertical oscillation, or bounce, cadence, and how much energy the user has expended. The feedback comes in realtime through a set earphones so users can correct themselves and track their performance on the app.

“We are good at taking data and converting it into actionable insights,” Perkash said.

The company launched its Lumo Lift product in China two weeks ago.

Ge Li, CEO of WuXi AppTec said in a statement: “Wearables technology will fundamentally change the traditional healthcare industry and address a number of previously unmet wellness needs. People are looking for technology to support positive, proactive behavior change through advanced insights including real-time feedback and coaching.”

Although wearables have generated interest in the mainstream market they have yet to gain traction on a massive scale. Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel is among those who have voiced pessimism that wearables companies will see implementation on a large scale for healthcare applications. Although wearables company partnerships with employer wellness businesses are not new, it will be interesting to see how effective Lumo Bodytech will be at converting workplace safety and physical therapy practices into customers.