By Riley Kaminer
OK, so you’re wearing a device like an Apple Watch or WHOOP that’s tracking your every move. But what are you actually doing with that data? And if you have an idea about what to do with it, how can you make it happen from a technical standpoint?
Miami startup Rook can help. Its API ports useful, usable data and valuable insights from wearables right into software and apps. Rook aggregates and transforms this data so that minimal developer resources and less analysis are required to access actionable insights and build new products.
“It’s amazing to have a lot of information because when you have a lot of information, you can create things – you can improve people’s lives,” co-founder and CEO Marco Benitez told Refresh Miami.
“In our case, we want to change and create a healthier world,” continued Benitez, who previously worked at Roche and Novartis. “These great insights and predictions can help you improve your health.” Rook has a B2B model and focuses on clients such as fitness platforms, insurance companies, and healthcare providers.
So far, Rook has upwards of 300 wearables in their API. Once Rook ingests and processes the data, it harmonizes, standardizes, and normalizes the information. Benitez signaled that Rook will soon take this one step further by offering artificial intelligence-powered insights and predictions.
“There still has to be a shift in mindset still,” co-founder and COO/CMO Jonas Dücker said of the push towards interoperability of these datasets. But he believes that things are moving in the right direction: for example with the FDA having recently approved wearable data as data that can be used as a medical record, as well as approving some wearables as medical devices.
“Generally, we see different brands opening up and looking for interoperability, looking for the exchange of data, looking for streamlining those data flows between different tech infrastructures, etc,” said Dücker. “That will then allow for new services to pop up. This is especially thanks to the pandemic which has accelerated a lot of those new services.”
Founded in 2018, Rook secured a $1.7 million pre-seed in March, led by the NuFund Venture Group. Benitez reports that the company will use these funds to expand its currently 12-person team, including by hiring for sales, marketing, and product roles in the US – with a focus on Miami.
“Right now we solve the problem of helping companies integrate with wearables, maintain those integrations, and make sense of the data,” noted Dücker. “Now with this funding, we’re shifting further and further into insights, predictions, and everything else.”
Rook took part in accelerator programs with both Techstars and Endeavor. “There are a lot of things happening in Miami,” Benitez said of his excitement to increase his involvement in the Miami tech movement.
In particular, Benitez underscored the VC presence here, as well as the increasing trend of wearable-related companies as well as South Florida-based insurance companies, who might be potential clients going forward.
READ MORE ON REFRESH MIAMI:
- Miami-based ROOK books $1.7M in pre-seed funding to unlock actionable health data
- CarePredict’s wearable will help you care for your elderly loved ones, even at a distance
- Creativity takes center stage at FIU’s College of Engineering and Computing Senior Design Showcase
- Assure Health secures $8.7M seed round to expand virtual healthcare platform
- Eight Sleep acquires digital coaching company Span Health
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