Startup Stories

This Bootstrapped Company Is Changing The Face Of Healthcare One Patient At A Time

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In a trust deficit society, we use the term, ‘‘Believe me’’ daily to express our thoughts. When it comes to healthcare, people are generally wary of the medical system and lack trust in hospitals, doctors, and clinics. These are the reasons behind naming the brand, BeliveMe. 

It is easy to pronounce and understand, and it stresses trust. BelivMe was incorporated on 2nd March 2021 and got DPIIT recognition on 15th November 2021 under the start-up India Initiative. 

The Idea Behind BelivMe

During the pandemic, Gulshan Kumar Singh, Founder of BelivMe came up with the idea of offering online healthcare services through the phone/internet. His research led him to see the shift from offline to online doctor consultation induced by the pandemic. People could not visit the doctor and were reluctant to go for an in-person consultation; they preferred online consultation at their convenience with minimal contact. They even picked home visits for diagnostic tests and treatment procedures. With all this in mind, BelivMe was born with the dream to provide the best online doctor consultation and to make healthcare more accessible. 

This realization led to the conclusion that telehealth could be a revolution in the healthcare system in India, although it was a new concept. The adoption of this concept was very less even in developed countries like the USA, the UK, and Europe. However, the COVID- 19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of this space and accelerated its growth by almost 2-3 years. With its massive infrastructure shortage and doctors in India, telehealth will be a game-changer for the industry. 

After researching for a couple of months and collecting data, BelivMe was finally launched on 15th June 2021 with just one service- the Mental Health service. They provided online mental health counseling through Audio and Video call. They were fortunate to have few paid customers even before the business launch, which came through a referral. 

Finding confidence in this early trust in the brand, they continued with the mental health service for a couple of months. In March 2022, they launched other services like-General Physicians, Dentists, Orthopaedic doctors, etc.

The brand has a functional website through which appointments and payments are taken; lately, they provide both online and offline appointments to the patients. 

Understanding Belivme And The Problem It Is Solving

““Healthcare is the need of every human being. Those who are on the way to the earth, Those who are living on earth, and those who are about to leave the earth.”” says Gulshan Kumar Singh, Founder, BelivMe.

BelivMe works on a hybrid model, providing online and offline doctor consultations. They provide solutions for non and minimally invasive treatments like- Laser hair treatment, laser treatment for acne, fat loss treatment, pigmentation treatment, etc.

They take appointments in advance through their website. But people can directly contact them through WhatsApp and request an appointment. With an excellent customer support team taking care of patients before and post consultation, healthcare has never been more accessible or easier. They take online appointments from PAN India, but their services are limited to Bangalore only for offline appointments.

BelivMe’s vision is to provide quality healthcare accessible to all. And they are solving a massive problem in healthcare accessibility by making it accessible to everyone and having some of the best doctors in the country working with them, with more slated to join the team as the business expands further. 

Careful considerations and planning need to go in before going for a 10-minute appointment with the doctor, and more time is spent on multiple follow-ups. This leads to a wastage of time, money, and effort. 

BelivMe’s online solution enables you to consult a doctor without visiting the doctor in person or have follow-up appointments online. Even viewing the reports can be done online by sending them to the doctor and then getting feedback on the recovery progress online. 

Now you don’t have to choose between an essential appointment at work and a doctor’s appointment; you can take appointments or follow-up sessions from anywhere and get the prescription on your WhatsApp/email. This truly is healthcare at the tip of your fingertip and it cannot get easier than this.

So What Are The Challenges Faced By BelivMe?

There are several challenges in the healthcare space. Some of them are:

1. Regulation

Healthcare space is heavily regulated; thus, it makes things very difficult for a start-up to work around these regulations. A few years ago, there were no clear guidelines on telehealth. A start-up must have relaxed policies to bring innovation to the space. Regulation on online medicine prescription and online consultation needs to be more flexible than it is today.

2. Shortage Of Infrastructure

India has a massive shortage of healthcare infrastructure in the country. We need more no beds, more ambulances, more emergency and trauma centres, and more nurses and midwives. According to a statement given by our Health Minister in April 2022 in the parliament, the current doctor-to-patient ratio is 1:864. This isn’t bad; however, more than half of the practising doctors are available in just a few big cities like- Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Pune, etc.

3. Internet Accessibility

Even though some reports say that India has the largest internet users in the world, the internet speed matters for a telehealth solution to work smoothly, with the 5G rollout and BharatNet scheme, this problem will be solved to a large extent.

4. Adoption

Even though the pandemic forced us to go online, some patients still hesitate to take consultations online. It is ingrained in us that we need to meet a doctor in person for the doctor to grasp the problem and give satisfactory consultation fully. According to BelivMe, it will take some time for people to trust the technology, leading to widespread adoption of the service. 

5. Reach To Rural Areas

Rural people are the most neglected ones by the healthcare systems. They have to travel miles to meet a good doctor. Healthcare facilities are almost non-existent, and no doctor wants to work in those areas. The gap is immense, and the challenge is steep, but it’s also an opportunity to make healthcare available to them.

What Do Business & Market Insights Look Like?

The size of India’sIndia’s healthcare sector is $ 372 billion (2022 F), which consists of different verticals like- Hospitals, Pharma, Diagnostics, Medical equipment and supplies, medical insurance, and Telemedicine. The healthcare sector in India is estimated to grow at 16.28% CAGR. This promises the opportunity that this sector has.

According to BelivMe’s internal calculation based on the services being offered, the market is at $ 1.3 billion. The aim is to capture a minimum of 5% of the market in the next 5 years.

Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities have unpreceded opportunities, and the market is ripe for disruption. They deserve better quality healthcare, and BelivMe has the potential to provide it to them.

Their primary target audiences are Millennials and Gen-Z. The reason is that most millennials are either job professionals or have busy lifestyles. They are looking for convenience and are ready to pay for that. They are tech-savvy and can easily take online consultations from their home, office, and even while travelling.

Gen-Z is mostly students who are about to get employed. They are tech-savvy and understand the need for technology. They are not only going to be our future customers but also our ambassadors.

As of now, their services are available both online and offline. Online consultations are open for people come from all over India. But for offline consultation, they are restricted only to Bangalore.

Partners, Tie-Ups And Expansion Plans, And Business Strategy Being Employed

The focus on partnerships with hospitals is not an area they’re looking at for multiple reasons. They are only operating in Bangalore and have tie-ups with individual clinics. They currently have 10 doctors working with the brand across different specialities.

They plan to expand to Tier-1 cities shortly. These are places where people have more problems and less medical infrastructure. They are also exploring opportunities to provide home services in healthcare. Currently, the company is at a nascent stage with budget constraints. The focus on growing the service is on organic growth through SEO and influencer partnerships.

Take A Look At The Revenue Model Of This Bootstrapped Company

BelivMe is a bootstrapped company and runs its business on a pay-per-service model. They charge fees for every consultation and treatment and have witnessed steady growth in revenue and hope to break even very soon. Moreover, they consider service providers like Practo, mfine, DocsApp, Lybrate, etc as their direct competitors and independent clinics, Hospitals, 1mg, Netmeds, etc as their indirect competitors.

Vision And Mission Of BelivMe

Vision: ​To become India’s most Trusted, Loved and Respected Online Healthcare Provider.

Mission: ​The experienced medical professionals with the brand put your healing needs first. Their goal is to make you feel better as quickly as possible. BelivMe is proud to provide high-quality customer service, medical experience, and commitment to health and wellness to all their patients.

Doctors Who Care: ​Not only will the doctors treat your existing conditions; but they also work to maximize your prevention strategies. BelivMe strives to help you improve your quality of life, achieve your wellness goals, and support your best possible life.  

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