Marking The Way To Better Health: Announcing Our Investment In Waymark

Marking The Way To Better Health: Announcing Our Investment In Waymark

We are delighted to announce Lux’s investment in Waymark, a groundbreaking public-benefit corporation founded by Drs. Rajaie Batniji and Sanjay Basu, which aims to deploy technology-enabled services for and with communities who need it most — the 1 in 4 Americans covered by Medicaid.

As we mark the beginning of a new year in the thick of a global health crisis — amidst a period of unprecedented technological breakthrough and unparalleled population health challenges — the path forward may seem opaque. While we continue to be excited about advancing deep technologies in pursuit of a better tomorrow, we also recognize that, when it comes to healthcare, technology must walk hand in hand with community.

Waymark is building a healthier America with and for communities where English may not be spoken, where technology may be rarely used, and where there may be a deep-rooted distrust of healthcare. The company will deliver evidence-based interventions and value-based care grounded in data about what actually works. By aligning business incentives with patient outcomes and building technology to deliver and measure, Waymark is taking a unique — and difficult — approach to addressing population health. And there is no better team out there to take on this challenge.

Waymark co-founder and CEO Dr. Rajaie Batniji is not only one of my oldest and dearest personal friends, but has also long been one of my most trusted advisers for more than a decade when it comes to all things healthtech and public health. A Stanford and UCSF trained physician with an Oxford doctorate, Rajaie has an unparalleled lifelong commitment to applying medicine and technology to addressing some of the healthcare industry’s most intractable challenges. I had the privilege of witnessing the conception and birth of Collective Health, which Rajaie co-founded, and stayed close throughout the evolution of the company and the industry–and our world.

As if Rajaie’s accolades aren’t enough, he is assembling a diverse and experienced team of industry heavyweights at Waymark.

Co-founder Dr. Sanjay Basu, who led Collective Health’s population health efforts, is an MD/PhD, epidemiologist, data scientist, and Rhodes Scholar, and has trained, studied, worked, and practiced everywhere from MIT and Harvard to Stanford and UCSF to Oxford. Afia Asamoah, whom I had the great privilege to work with during our time together at Google Health, is not only an exceptional Harvard-educated attorney with expertise in the complexities of technology and population health, but also a health policy expert with experience ranging from Washington to Silicon Valley. From Christina Fellows’ experience with national payers to Michael Ceballos’ deep background in health systems, the rest of the Waymark team is similarly impressive, intersectional, and interdisciplinary–reflecting the team’s commitment to inclusivity, curiosity, and care.

We are delighted to co-invest alongside a16z, led by my friend and former GV partner Vineeta Agarwala, and New Enterprise Associates. This $45M round is just the beginning for Waymark, and we are honored to partner with them in their pursuit of better healthcare for all.

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Deena Shakir
General Partner

Deena's investments span stages and sectors, and include women's health, digital health infrastructure, health equity, foodtech, and fintech. Above all, she seeks out extraordinary, often underdog, founders on a mission.

Prior to Lux, Deena was a Partner at GV (formerly Google Ventures), led product partnerships at Google for health, search, and AI/ML, and directed social impact investments at Deena also served as a Presidential Management Fellow at The U.S. Department of State under Secretary Clinton, where she helped launch President Obama’s first Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

What you seek is seeking you. –Jalaluddin Rumi

Deena self-funded her undergraduate degree at Harvard (Social Studies and Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations) and MA at Georgetown through a variety of merit scholarships and side hustles, including co-founding and selling her first company while in college. She is a Lecturer in Management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, a Board Director for the National Venture Capital Association, and a member of Kauffman Fellows, Aspen Finance Fellows, and The Council on Foreign Relations. 

Deena is a frequent speaker and commentator and has been featured in print and television on Bloomberg, CNBC and NBC, in print in the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Forbes, Techcrunch, Marie Claire, STAT, and more, and has delivered keynote addresses at major industry conferences. She was named a "Top 30 Under 40 in Healthcare" by Business Insider and "Top Senior Woman to Watch in Venture Capital" by the Wall Street Journal in 2021, "Top 50 in Digital Health" by Rock Health and 40 Under 40 by Fortune Magazine in 2022.

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Marking The Way To Better Health: Announcing Our Investment In Waymark

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