UK digital health startup Huma will lay off around 45 employees amid a slowdown in revenues and a tricky fundraising environment.
Huma, a remote patient monitoring platform for pharma companies and medical providers, announced the layoffs on August 8 in an internal email to employees, which Sifted has seen.
“Many of our clients and partners are undertaking cost saving initiatives, and slowing down on their investment in new technology, and as a result of these many factors our revenues are not growing as fast as we had planned,” the email said.
“To ensure the long-term success of Huma, we need to reduce our rate of spending and focus on becoming profitable,” the email continued. A large part of those savings would come from staff costs, it said.
The layoffs, which Huma has confirmed to Sifted, make up just under 10% of the company’s global workforce of more than 500.
Money money money
These cost-cutting measures won’t impact Huma’s M&A strategy, Sifted understands.
In June, the company raised £20.5m in an unannounced round, according to Companies House filings. “We did a small top up of our balance sheet in support of our M&A strategy,” says Ingeborg Oie, CFO and chief strategy officer. Sifted understands the capital has been used to acquire a company in the US, which is yet to be announced.
“Our business in the US has been growing faster than expected, and we are investing more there to create the highest ROI for our shareholders,” a Huma spokesperson tells Sifted.
In the past 18 months, Huma has acquired two other companies, including digital clinical trials startup Alcedis and patient engagement platform iPLATO.
Since launching in 2011, the company has announced $217m worth of funding, including a $33m round from Covid-vaccine manufacturer AstraZeneca in August 2022 and a $130m Series C in May 2021, according to Dealroom.
It’s partnered with health providers like the NHS and Johns Hopkins University, pharma companies like Bayer and Smith+Nephew, and Chinese tech behemoth Tencent.
The company saw a surge in interest in its remote patient monitoring tech during the pandemic, and its headcount has risen 500% since the beginning of 2020. Losses also grew in that time, rising from £12m in 2020 to £26m in 2021, according to Huma’s most recent annual accounts on Companies House.
Huma isn’t the only European healthtech to hit hard times recently. Swedish telehealth provider Kry laid off around 400 employees and pulled out of several markets in 2022. Babylon exited its US business entirely at the beginning of August and is now scrambling to find a buyer for what’s left of its UK operations.