Real, A Mental Health Platform, Announces Series B Funding Round of $37 Million Led By Owl Ventures And Their Newly Appointed Advisor Megan Rapinoe

Real Closes Funding Round Bringing The Team to $53 Million To Continue Scaling Accessible, Effective, Mental Health Care Solutions

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today, Real, the mental health care company building a new platform based therapy model, revealed news of the company’s Series B funding round, which closed at an oversubscribed round of $37 million. With April being National Stress Awareness Month, Real is thrilled to share this funding announcement as it continues its growth, helping members access clinically-effective tools and resources to make mental health care an accessible, daily, practice. Led by Owl Ventures, the world’s largest venture capital firm dedicated to transformative education companies, Owl Ventures is joined by former Cityblock CEO and Chief Health Officer Iyah Romm and Dr. Slyvia Romm and investors from previous rounds including Lightspeed Venture Partners, Female Founders Fund, Forerunner Ventures, and BBG Ventures.

Real is an affordable app-based therapy solution that offers programs and resources for creating a mental health care routine. The company has been able to prove how their therapist-designed, self-guided approach to care is an effective and scalable model that can transform the industry, including clinical insights that demonstrate a clinically significant reduction of depression and anxiety across a range of demographics. By leveraging their team of culturally-rich therapists for each Pathway, they work to equalize the space for a wide demographic of members, noting the perspectives of communities like LGBTQIA+, immigrants, people of color and more. Real’s investors join the innovative fast-growing company on their mission to provide proven resources and tools, so everyone can make practicing a mental wellness routine a part of their day. The funding round will help the company continue its goal of changing the way we think about and engage with mental health care by:

  • Providing a suite of on-demand mental health tools surpassing the scale of the 1:1 therapy system
  • Ensuring high-quality mental health care is accessible at a lower price point
  • Building culturally competent care that speaks to underrepresented communities left out of the traditional mental health care system
  • Expanding their health research efforts to continue giving clinically-effective results through a people-first health care system

“The last few years have put a spotlight on mental health and Real’s mission is to make mental wellness an essential part of well-being,” says Ariela Safira, CEO and Founder of Real. “In order to do this, Real is transforming mental wellness into a continuous, everyday experience integrated into people’s day-to-day lives. Real is excited to partner with Owl Ventures, a leader in scaling digital solutions for the education sector, to apply these learnings to transforming mental health care.”

“We are thrilled to partner with Ariela and the entire Real team to help bring true scale and innovation to a broken mental health care system,” says Tory Patterson, Managing Director of Owl Ventures. “Ariela’s vision for a new, effective, and accessible mental health care system is clearly the future for delivering scaled mental health services to a population in desperate need of high quality solutions.”

Backed by celebrity investors like Gwenyth Paltrow, Megan Rapinoe, and Eric Kendricks, Real has proven to be a leader in on-demand mental health care by making it readily available for everyone across a variety of themes through the platform’s series of Pathways, including body image, depression, relationship, anxiety, career, stress, and more. Real allows its members to have unlimited access to their programming for just $13 per month, which is considerably more affordable and well below the average $300 per therapy session cost. In just the last year, Real has laid the groundwork needed to project the company to become a top leader in mental health care platforms and set up the company for long-term growth and success, while continuing to scale access to mental health care for millions of Americans.

“As an early believer in Ariela and Real’s success, we’re proud to expand our investment in Real’s Series B fundraise,” says Nicole Quinn, Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners. “As a board member for the last year, I can say Real is one of the few companies in this space building their foundation on clinical research and using that to inform building a truly innovative care model. Real has the right team in place to deliver on their promise of reimagining the mental health care system and I’m excited to see Real continue to scale and positively impact the mental health of their members.”

Coming off of this $37 million funding round, which marks net $53 million in funding, Real will invest further in health research to build the most effective and innovative care model that speaks to modern consumers. Real is focused on continuing to provide access to mental health care for all, while expanding its business to include more resources, therapists, and Pathways – ultimately closing the gap in mental health care. For more information about Real, please visit online at or on Instagram @joinreal.


Nixing appointments, Real’s unique and effective service provides members with high quality care at a lower price point (for just $13 a month!) – anytime, any place. Outside the traditional 1:1 therapy model, the monthly membership provides a suite of on-demand, digital tools for some of the most commonly felt inner-struggles. Designed to keep up with any lifestyle, members work through the app’s Pathways, available for download in the Apple and Google Play stores, accessing audio-based and interactive therapist-designed programs for:

  • Getting to Know Yourself
  • Meeting Your Body Where It’s At
  • Working With Your Depression Inside and Out
  • Navigating Adult Friendships
  • Communicating Like a Damn Good Partner
  • WTF Am I Doing With My Career
  • What to Do With All This Anxiety
  • How to (Really) Feel


Owl Ventures is the largest venture capital fund in the world focused on the education technology market with over $2.25 billion in assets under management. The Silicon Valley-based firm invests in the world’s leading education technology companies across the education spectrum encompassing PreK-12, higher education, and the future of work (career mobility/professional learning). Owl Ventures has deep domain expertise and leverages a global network of Limited Partners, investors, and strategic partners to help entrepreneurs scale their businesses into transformative category-leading companies. Learn more at


Lightspeed Venture Partners is a multi-stage venture capital firm focused on accelerating disruptive innovations and trends in the Enterprise, Consumer and Health sectors. Over the past two decades, the Lightspeed team has backed hundreds of entrepreneurs and helped build more than 400 companies globally, including Snap, Nest, Nutanix, AppDynamics, MuleSoft, OYO, Guardant, Affirm, and GrubHub. Lightspeed and its affiliates currently manage $10.5B across the global Lightspeed platform, with investment professionals and advisors in Silicon Valley, Israel, India, China, Southeast Asia, and Europe.


Autumn Communications

Shira Berg

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