Q&A with Peter Foley of Let's Get Checked

Peter Foley, CEO of Let’s Get Checked, recently announced a €2.5m deal with Quest Diagnostics, one of the largest laboratories in the US.

What do you do at Let’s Get Checked?

Let’s Get Checked is a technology platform that allows customers to access lab tests through the comfort of home, or through retail pharmacies.

We allow people to order the tests with self-sampling kits and they have pre-paid envelopes inside to send the test off, and then they can view the results through a personalised dashboard. We have a full clinical support team in the background.

What is your market?

Well, in the beginning, we had to establish a proof of concept. That this was something that could work, and work well. We looked at the areas where there was an immediate demand for this and it exists around sexual health.

I thought demand was created by sexual health, because people don’t really want to go to a clinic for STIs or STI checks. However, it became clear it was because time was an issue for people at work or university.

We did keep it focused on that market, because we got immediate traction and began to develop a retail model of people going into pharmacies, buying the kit, and registering in-store.

Has the recent rise and fall of Theranos, in the US, offered a cautionary tale?

Theranos were a unique case, though. If you look at the US market, you have the likes of Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, who are probably the only real laboratories who can operate at a national level in the US.

They operate on a very set model, and do over two million tests per day. What Theranos tried to do was to disrupt the entire space. We’re looking to disrupt a small fraction of that large space.

I hate using the word disrupt, but that’s what they tried to do. Elizabeth Holmes, from Theranos, came in and tried to take on the lab costs associated with tests, by creating her own laboratory.

With her model, test costs would come down from $20 (€17.80) a test to just $1.50. She also tried to create the analysers, which sat in the labs, and also tried to do the home-testing space similar to us.

No-one can fault her ambition, but she just tried to take a massive market at once and that just over-stretched them in the end. It could have been phenomenal, but it just didn’t work. We’re not trying to do it all at once.

What next for Let’s Get Checked?

Well, we now have lab partners around the world and that means we can begin to tap into speciality testing, within certain jurisdictions, to add to our services.

We’re also going to branch out pretty quickly into the different kinds of tests I mentioned earlier.

We’re in the middle of our Series A funding, and we’ll be using that to facilitate our marketing spend, grow our brand, and get out to our target market. We have an opportunity, now, to grow fast, so there is a lot to do.


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