Billion Dollar Startup Babylon Goes Bankrupt

If you travelled on the London tube in 2019, you’ve probably heard of Babylon Health. Once a popular London-based tele-health startup valued at nearly $2 billion, Babylon has sadly reached the end of its road.

The company, backed by influential entities like DeepMind and well-funded health insurance companies, has faced a turbulent journey that led to its insolvency.


How It All Began


Babylon Health’s story began as an innovative tele-health start-up in London.

It gained popularity for its advanced healthcare solutions and its integration with the UK’s National Health Service (NHS).

Babylon’s partnership with the NHS allowed it to offer services like GP at Hand, an app that enabled UK residents to select it as their primary health practice. With long GP waiting lists and infrequent available appointments, the app offered convenient access to healthcare services, attracting a significant user base. Additionally, Babylon’s tele-health practice served around 700,000 people in the UK through collaborations with major providers such as Bupa.




Despite its initial success, Babylon Health faced significant challenges and controversies. Concerns were raised by doctors regarding patient safety and corporate practices within the company. These concerns led to increased scrutiny and regulatory attention.

By 2022, Babylon began experiencing setbacks, losing major contracts in its home market, including a significant deal with the NHS in Wolverhampton. The company’s stock prices plummeted, and it faced delisting from the New York Stock Exchange.

As its troubles escalated, Babylon Health sought solutions to save its operations. In a bid to secure its future, the company entered negotiations with Swiss health tech start-up MindMaze for a potential acquisition. However, these discussions were disrupted by uncertainties, leading to the collapse of the deal. The company’s US operations were put into Chapter 7 insolvency, allowing Babylon to focus on its UK operations, which were on the brink of bankruptcy.



Administration and Acquisition by eMed Healthcare UK


Amid financial turmoil, Babylon Health’s UK subsidiary entered administration. Alvarez & Marsal, the appointed administrators, facilitated the sale of a substantial portion of Babylon’s assets to eMed Healthcare UK, a subsidiary of US-based eMed. Notably, GP at Hand was excluded from the sale and remained operational. The acquisition aimed to minimise disruptions for Babylon’s users and maintain continuity in its services.

The acquisition by eMed Healthcare UK raises questions about Babylon Health’s future trajectory. While the specifics of the deal remain undisclosed, eMed’s background in tele-health services suggests a focus on leveraging Babylon’s assets to expand its offerings. eMed, which itself underwent significant growth and acquisition, specialises in remote healthcare services, including Covid-19 testing, assessments, and prescription management.




Babylon Health’s journey from a promising tele-health startup to its insolvency and subsequent acquisition reflects the complex and dynamic nature of the healthcare industry. The company’s integration with the NHS initially positioned it as a trailblazer in digital healthcare solutions.

However, internal challenges and regulatory concerns eroded its standing, ultimately leading to its downfall. As eMed Healthcare UK takes the reins, the future of Babylon’s assets remains uncertain, leaving room for speculation about the potential revival of its innovative healthcare offerings.