Dental Start-Up Quip Raises $40 Million for Oral Health Products & Services

© quip

quip, a dental health start-up which has sold over a million of its electric toothbrushes since 2015, has recently received $40 million in funding. With equity financing from Sherpa Capital and debt financing from TriplePoint Capital, this latest round brings quip’s total funding to around $60 million. Their hope is that this new round of funding will allow them to forge ahead with their mission of creating a “simple, affordable, surprisingly enjoyable oral care service for everyone.”

Originally functioning as a direct to consumer website to sell its electric toothbrushes and other services, quip has launched into physical stores starting with Target. This expansion into Target comes on the heels of another major move for quip: they also acquired Afora, a dental care plan provider. This key acquisition of Afora — along with quip’s digital platform and retail launch with Target — helps give quip the opportunity to connect millions of users to over 25,000 dental health professionals.

With their $40 million in funding, quip hopes to make some serious strides by opening up more omnichannel programs. This includes launching their “Practice Program,” whose aim is to help dental service providers offer quip’s services and products to patients. Hopefully, the Practice Program will create value both for patients and for dental service providers.

In addition, quip is looking forward to growing their Brooklyn-based team and HQ. Though they are already, according to the press release, “the largest oral care subscription service with a digital platform,” their new funding will help them further expand their products, services, and partnerships.

Unique Services & Specially Designed Electric Toothbrushes

According to the recent press release, quip’s CEO Simon Enever had a unique vision when he built the platform with his co-founder Bill May. That vision was “to create a full-service oral care platform that serves every oral care need, from the products our members use every day, to the professional care services they require at least twice a year.”

Indeed, part of quip’s unique value as a service is that it sends alerts to customers to help them manage their oral care. Though their goal is certainly not to replace oral health professionals, they hope that their services can help improve outcomes for patients. Citing the startling statistic that only 40% of people see a dentist yearly (even with insurance), quip sends digitalized reminders to their users every six months, alerting them that it’s time to schedule an appointment with a dental health professional.

In addition to reminders, quip helps connect dental providers and patient through its platform. Customers connected to a dental provider through quip will receive personalized reminders when it’s time to schedule an appointment with their provider. Also, quip helps establish a rewards program though connected providers for the benefit of patients— with the aim of providing incentives for regular dental care. As part of their service, they’ll deliver information from the customer’s dental health team to the connected patient — including checkup notes and dentist tips.

In between helping people schedule their dental visits, quip focuses on providing helpful educational content to consumers via their blog and tips sections on their website. They focus on common sense oral care advice, such as proper brushing techniques and the importance of brushing in the morning, evening, and after meals.

The Buzz on quip’s Electric Toothbrush

Part of quip’s vision is to sort through the gimmicks that define the electric toothbrush market. To set themselves apart, they focus on a few simple areas to ensure their product is achieving its ends:

  • Bristles & Head– quip uses soft bristles with a simple flat design.
  • Electric function– quip uses a 2-minute timer with 30-second guide pulses to ensure that customers are brushing for long enough.
  • Batteries– they outfit their toothbrushes with ordinary, removable, chargeable or non-chargeable batteries (so consumers don’t have to purchase specialized batters or charge their toothbrush).
  • Streamlined– quip is designed to be sleek and easy to grip and handle.
  • Travel-ready– quip is designed to be on-the-go ready, with a specialized wall mount and travel cover.

Electric brushes need to have their bristle heads switched out every 1-3 months, but consumers don’t always follow those guidelines. Therefore, quip has developed a specialized refill service that ensures customers receive new brush heads on a schedule.

Generally, quip’s aesthetic is neat, streamlined, and gimmick-free. The toothpaste they create is similarly streamlined, which focus on the anti-cavity power of fluoride.

What does an ADA Stamp of Approval Mean?

Quip’s toothbrushes and toothpaste have both been approved by the American Dental Association. According to the ADA’s Seal of Acceptance standards, this means that quip’s products:

  • ​Help remove plaque
  • Help prevent and reduce gingivitis
  • Have soft bristles on a flexible brush head
  • Don’t have jagged edges on bristles
  • Have gone through tests to prove electric safety
  • Are safe for use on oral hard and soft surfaces
  • Meet the requirements of a safety laboratory

Receiving this important ADA seal of approval helps to set quip apart from the many electric toothbrush brands that consumers encounter when making oral health decisions.

The All-Black quip Electric Toothbrush

Recently, quip has launched sales of their All-Black quip electric toothbrush in partnership with the ADA Foundation. Every purchase of this All-Black quip will help support the ADA Foundation’s mission of providing oral care access and education to disadvantaged families. Quip will be donating up to $250,000 to the ADA Foundation to help support this cause.

The “All-Black” electric toothbrush is the same in design to the other quip toothbrushes, showcasing the soft bristles, streamlined design, and travel-ready functions of the other quip brushes. As part of the set that supports the ADA foundation, customers receive an automatic refill plan. Every three months, quip will send new bristles and a new battery to the consumer (with free shipping) to ensure consumers keep on top of their oral hygiene.

Their “brush black, give back” campaign helps serve the dual purpose of getting their ADA-approved electric toothbrush to consumers, connecting consumers to dental health professionals, and working to improve oral care access and education to those in need this holiday season.