Program Uses Smart Toothbrush Data to Determine Dental Rates

Alex Frommeyer comes from a family of dentists. Now, he has a start-up that sells dental insurance, but with a twist.

The Columbus, Ohio, company, called Beam Dental, started out by selling Bluetooth-connected toothbrushes, meaning that their product communicates with an app.

Once they got people using it, the founders saw an opportunity to use more than a year’s worth of data they collected to move into the dental insurance market. The idea is to figure out which of their users are regularly flossing and brushing their teeth, and therefore less likely to run into expensive problems like root canals and cavities, and offer them cheaper rates and other incentives.

That insurance product, which is now available in 16 states, earned the company a fresh round of $22.5 million in financing led by Kleiner Perkins.

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