Noom Sees Growth, Investors

Jan 20, 2020

According to analysts and Bloomberg News, Noom has posted impressive growth, driven in part by aggressive advertising: Noom closed 2019 with $237 million in revenue, up from $61 million and $12 million in the two previous years, respectively.

This New Year’s Day, 55,000 people signed up to lose weight with the smartphone app Noom. The firm claims to have helped more than 350,000 people to lose weight.

Noom combines human coaches and AI (artificial intelligence), and has attracted $114 million from investors such as Sequoia Capital, Groupe Arnault-backed Aglaé Ventures, WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum, Serena Williams, and other prominent names that see promise in its approach and growth.

Noom was founded over a decade ago by Artem Petakov, a former Google engineer, and Saeju Jeong, who strayed from his family line of 29 medical doctors to be an entrepreneur.

In the early days, the company didn't gain traction. They tried a whole bunch of different strategies, including doing pure artificial intelligence, where it’s completely automated, and they tried 100% human coaches, but it wasn’t until they merged the two that the company started to grow.

Noom appeals to a younger demographic that is more tech-savvy than the typical users of such diet programs as WW and NutriSystem, whose typical customers are in their late 40s. Whether the firm can move into that older demographic remains to be seen, and is probably what Noom is hoping for, but the Millennials now represent a large group in and of themselves, now outnumbering the Baby Boomers in terms of population in the U.S.

Company founders say they’re in constant conversation with their investors, who are watching the market to assess a possible IPO this year.

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