Doximity: Financing a Social Network for Physicians

By Robert Chess, Ryan Kissick
2016 | Case No. E598 | Length 22 pgs.

Despite the existence of large social networks, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, co-founders Jeff Tangney and Dr. Nate Gross believed there was a unique opportunity to create a social network specifically targeted at physicians. The two envisioned a social network that would enable doctors to find any doctor in the United States, regardless of whether they had signed up for Doximity. By combining hundreds of medical databases and journals onto a single platform, Doximity would immediately contain information on nearly every U.S. physician, including their medical school, specialty, location, phone number, fax number, and associated journal articles. In addition to locating doctors, Doximity would allow for HIPAA secure messaging between any doctors in the United States. Finally, Doximity would provide custom-curated news and research, personalized to the clinical interests on their Doximity profiles. Doctors within any geography or specialty would receive the most up-to-date and relevant information without having to read through dozens of journal articles.

Tangney and Gross’s vision proved wildly successful; in just two years, Doximity became one of the largest networks for U.S. healthcare professionals, with approximately 10 percent of U.S. doctors as members. By the beginning of 2014, 40 percent of U.S. physicians had signed onto Doximity’s platform. “Doximity: Financing a Social Network for Physicians” examines how Tangney and Gross raised capital for their rapidly growing healthcare start-up.

Learning Objective

The case explores the types of financial capital available to Doximity at various stages of the company’s evolution and several key decisions related to funding Doximity’s growth, including: selecting the right financial partners, assessing the appropriate time to raise additional capital, determining how much money to raise, and evaluating term sheets.
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