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Updated: May 15, 2024

Small Business Pulse: Health care 'disruptor' sees challenge in keeping up with demand

Woman smiling File photo / Jim Neuger Colleen Kavanagh, founder and CEO of SoulBeing, says the health care startup's biggest challenge is keeping up with demand.
About SoulBeing 
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SoulBeing, a startup that connects employers with a network of alternative health and wellness care providers as a benefit for employees, is the next stop in this Mainebiz special series during Small Business Month.

The nine-employee company is led by Colleen Kavanagh, who founded it in 2019. Now the business is trying to stay ahead of demand as it settles into a new Falmouth office.

Mainebiz: How has your business outlook changed?
Colleen Kavanagh: More optimistic than last year and steady from a month ago. We built the SoulBeing business model to withstand changes in capital availability (from both our clients and investors), which allows us to remain agile even as we scale.

By keeping our price point low, we are able to meet diverse client needs much more affordably than the competition, which helps us support our clients through their toughest times, when they need the most support.

MB: What is your biggest business challenge today and why?
CK: Keeping up with demand. Our marketplace model requires constant balance between providers and employees/dependents seeking complementary care services. Since this is an area of rapid growth, we are constantly recruiting new providers to our network, and working to staff ourselves ahead of the curve to ensure high-quality service for all of our members.

MB: How are inflation and high interest rates affecting your business and pricing?
CK: Health care is unique because year-over-year premium increases remain the biggest challenge for most of our clients in this space. There's more pressure on our clients, which impacts our negotiations.

But we are able to help them implement a solution that solves for more diverse health priorities in the workplace, at a price point right-sized to their needs. Our anticipation of these needs has allowed our pricing model to remain consistent in this market.

MB: Now that you have an office, how does that impact your expenses?
CK: We are so thankful to have space to be together as a team after being fully remote. We are still focused on keeping our office expenses low so we can maximize our continued investment in growth and technology.

Thankfully, we have incredible partnerships that have allowed us access to space we can grow in while maximizing our collaboration potential.

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