KY FOUNDER SPOTLIGHT: Aaron Gani
Aaron Gani is founder and CEO of the Elizabethtown-based BehaVR.
What does BehaVR do?
BehaVR improves mental and physical health through our digital wellness and therapeutics Virtual Reality programs, addressing stress, anxiety, pain and other behavioral health challenges.
What sets BehaVR apart?
We provide virtual health solutions leveraging the unique neurological power of Virtual Reality, while dynamically personalizing each member experience via our AI cloud platform. And our legacy and DNA is highly influenced by Humana, and prominent healthcare visionaries and investors, so we have adapted our cutting edge virtual health capabilities to the realities of how our healthcare system actually works.
What was the greatest challenge you encountered in launching your startup and how did you overcome it?
We are creating something very new – integrating the proven neurological power of VR and immersive game-like worlds with models of virtual care and digital therapeutics that extend beyond traditional healthcare and telehealth solutions. Educating our stakeholders and resisting pressure to just do or be what’s expected and well-understood has been core to our approach.
What are you most proud of about BehaVR?
The amazing stories we hear from our patients and members about how we’ve helped to dramatically improved their quality of life.[Text Wrapping Break]
What piece of advice do you have for new founders – or – what have you learned that you wish you’d known when launching a startup?
My best piece of advice is stay true to your vision – be doggedly persistent, even while listening to those around you. But don’t give up on your goal – make it happen! Reid Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn said that “If you’re doing something truly innovative, that means a lot of smart people disagree with you.” Keep at it until you succeed, and then those smart people will see what you see.
What is the most important ingredient or ingredients for a thriving startup ecosystem?
Support for founders with strategic insights, and sources of venture capital, from seed and angel funding, through later rounds. Without capital, there can be little innovation.
What makes Kentucky a great place to innovate?
We have a great center of gravity in aging care and healthcare, anchored by Humana, Kindred, Signature HealthCARE, and others. We also have proximity to regional powerhouses like Nashville, Charlotte, Atlanta, and beyond. And we’ve got a great quality of life to offer. In a post-COVID world, we fully expect to see more people interested in working virtually from places like Kentucky and Tennessee.
Find out more about BehaVR by visiting www.behavr.com
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