Carlos Argüello started Sevelyn with the goal of bringing on-demand healthcare to patients regardless of insurance coverage or a language barrier. Initially, Argüello focused on providing primary care, but with too many logistics to navigate as a startup, he quickly pivoted to focusing on mental health.
“We started diving more into our customer discovery, went back through the 400 customer discovery interviews that we had done at that time, and started sifting through all the interviews,” said Argüello. “And we found that about 80% of our interviewees, when they were talking about their health care issues, or the pain points they have with health care, mentioned mental health.”
Sevelyn is an online marketplace bridging the gap Latinos in the US face when seeking mental health services. Through the company’s platform, Latinos are able to connect with vetted, mental health providers in Latin American, who understand the language, culture, and everyday life challenges Latinos face.
Less than 5.5% of all the therapists in the US today can speak a second language, Argüello told Clay & Milk. “That’s a big problem. Because we are a country of immigrants. And ven some people that are fully bilingual, when it comes to therapy, often prefer to speak with somebody in their first language.”
Services provides therapy sessions at a fixed rate of $50 per session. Additionally, Sevelyn offers a free 45-minute first session with each therapist to ensure you find the right one for you.
What’s next for Sevelyn?
Sevelyn is currently participating in this year’s cohort of Techstars Iowa and will be presenting at Techstars Demo Day tomorrow night at the Science Center in Downtown Des Moines. Argüello says that the company is looking to raise a seed round following Demo Day.
Argüello says he wants to take the lessons that he’s learned from trying to acquire the Latino market, and then do a rinse and repeat model to other ethnicities in the US that have the same challenges in getting access to mental health.
“We don’t want to also be known for a teletherapy platform only, or a digital mental health platform only. We want to be known for a mental well-being platform for non-English speakers,” said Argüello.
Techstars Iowa Accelerator Announces 2021 Class -July 19, 2021