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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

World’s first interactive yoga studio closes $3 million seed round

Yoogaia wants to continue making wellbeing more accessible globally.

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The Helsinki-based wellness startup Yoogaia announces closing a $3 million seed investment round from Nokia Growth Partners, Inventure, Sanoma Ventures and Point Nine Capital. The interactive yoga studio will continue its international expansion with the new funding – And also concentrates on developing their mobile operations.

Mikko Petäjä, the CEO of Yoogaia, says that they had their focus already on this round in Autumn 2014 when Inventure made their first investment in the company.

“In January we started contacting investors that we both felt would add value. Inventure made an early follow on commitment which was really nice from our point of view and being such a high profile Nordic investor, it has added a lot of credibility to our story. So their commitment, also on personal level, to help us grow has had a big impact in the discussions with other investors,” describes Petäjä and says it continuously astonishes him how time consuming the funding processes are:

“It’s ironic how difficult it is, at first, to even get to talk to investors, let alone get them interested in what you have to offer. And then, as things progress and people start to hear about you, you find yourself in a situation where, in the end, there’s many times more interest than there is room and you end up saying no to people that would be absolutely lovely to collaborate with. We are, of course, extremely lucky to have found investors that we really feel strongly about and want to share our future with.”

Getting even more mobile?

Yoogaia has been grown rapidly since the company was found in 2012, and they reach nowadays 50 000 users from over 50 countries. The company has studios in Helsinki, London and Hong Kong.

”We have an extremely loyal customer base that finds true value in our offering, attending classes several times a week on average. This investment enables us to serve customers’ needs even better, making everyday wellbeing more accessible to more people around the world,” says Petäjä.

While Yoogaia offers flexibility to its users by providing the access for yoga classes through the platform from any location in the world, the company also wants to continue to provide the best service for their customers. To support this vision, Petäjä announces that Yoogaia’s interactive live yoga application for iOS will be launched globally in the beginning of September, and the Android version is following soon after:

“Originally, we started to develop the service for desktop because that made it easier for us to test, validate, make mistakes and redo. Our users travel a lot and are heavy users of mobile devices, so the transition is clear. The user experience is less distorted in mobile and while you might not think a smaller screen size is of benefit, the whole experience just works due to the simplified flow and ease of use. We’re not a mobile service as such, but do want to explore the opportunity of mobile further,” states Petäjä.

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