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Keas, a San Francisco-based startup co-founded by veteran technologist Adam Bosworth and enterprise software entrepreneur George Kassagbi, has raised $6.5 million in new funds from existing investors Atlas Ventures and Ignition Parters. The new funds will be used to expand the company’s sales and marketing efforts.
Bosworth in past life was chief architect of BEA Systems and helped develop XML. He later joined Google(s GOOG) to work on Google Health. Bosworth left Google Health to start Keas (where he is chief technology officer) nearly four years ago to build personalized tools for people to improve their health.
There were few takers for the initial version of Keas’ data-driven health and wellness management web app. About a year ago Keas decided to turn wellness into a social game focused on improving health and fitness by being proactive. It also decided to work with companies who were looking for ways to improve employee health.
In this new wellness social game, employees are clubbed into teams of six and they compete against each other by getting points for activities such as exercise and eating well. Over the course of a 12-week challenge, team members motivate each other to develop healthy habits like taking the stairs or putting down the doughnuts. Along the way, each player earns points for their activity. The points add up to team prizes and rewards. Eating veggies, walking and exercising all get you points. Nearly 60,000 workers at companies like Pfizer and Bechtel have started using the system since the September launch. The company expects to add another 20 companies – also paying customers – to its platform.
Here is a video of Bosworth from the GigaOM RoadMap conference held in San Francisco in November 2011.