A free matching service that links up health technology startups with industry experts has been launched.

Kandu, which launched on 5 February, claims to ease stress for entrepreneurs by hooking them up with trusted mentors including clinicians, marketing experts and health data scientists.

The platform  has a checklist that helps startups identify what they are likely to need as they move from conception stage and throughout development.

Co-founder Nina Lovelace told Digital Health News that the company launched with the health and wellbeing sector because they already had access to a “huge number” of experts from the field.

Lovelace, a digital strategist and product consultant, added that launching a health technology product could be a long process and suggested that Kandu would help entrepreneurs on their journey.

“Kandu helps early stage startups in the health and wellbeing sector with things that they need to know as they go through the development stage, such as product development,” she said.

“This could include advice on what they need to build on and their strategy.”

Lovelace, who founded the company alongside startup mentor and marketing expert, Jenni Young, also touched on the importance of research and user experience.

“I think sometimes the norm is for startups to build something before they have done the research,” she said.

“As a result, the majority of the time the lack of research means the startup ends up spending more on technology than they need to.

“Startups also sometimes do not understand the importance of user experience.”

All experts are vetted by Kandu, and startups can offer a fee, equity, flexible working or even just a cup of coffee in return for help.

They can be identified through the Kandu ‘K’ trust badge, which is given to an expert based on previous work and recommendations from users.

Looking towards the future, Lovelace she said she hoped Kandu could expand to other sectors.