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Just Go Grind

Jan 22, 2021

Robert Krayn is the Co-Founder and CEO of Talkiatry, a company working to change the fact that mental health experiences are often intimidating and complicated for people who need help. Talkiatry makes finding and visiting a qualified professional simple. By combining technology with accessibility and comfort for patients and providers, they achieve the depth of a fully featured psychiatry and therapy network while having the immediacy of a clinic.

Prior to the founding of Talkiatry, Robert was Vice President at MidOcean Partners, where he spent 5 years as a senior analyst. He oversaw a $300M portfolio of high yield bonds, equities, and derivatives in the consumer, retail healthcare and other sectors. His experience and understanding of these sectors helped him develop the proprietary business model for Talkiatry. Before joining MidOcean, he was an analyst at Guggenheim Partners in their Mergers & Acquisitions Group in New York as well as a credit analyst at the Bank of New York Mellon. Robert graduated Summa Cum Laude from Rutgers University with a Bachelor of Science in Finance.

Robert's passion for mental healthcare stems from personal experience. In December of 2016, just days before Christmas, he was assaulted by a neighbor during a home invasion in the New York apartment he shared with his fiancé. Struggling with feeling comfortable in his own home, he began seeking mental healthcare. The journey to get appropriate help only compounded the problem as he was forced to see a cash-pay out-of-network provider with a lengthy waitlist. Arriving at the basement-level psychiatrist’s office, he was confronted with tape-covered doorbells with hastily scrawled names beneath them and no reception staff, a concept all-too-familiar to New Yorkers. Fast forward to 2019, after having spent over 5 years investing professionally in consumer and retail-health companies for a large asset management firm in New York, Robert decided he wanted his next career move to have an impact. He combined his passion and his previous experience to start a new venture, one that would expand the access and reduce the stigma of mental healthcare - Talkiatry.   


About Our Partner

This episode is brought to you Varia Search. Varia Search is a boutique legal recruiting firm that uses a bespoke approach to fill legal department roles from general counsel to paralegal. They have a particular focus on startups and growing tech companies.

They are a boutique firm which allows them to provide individualized, in-depth attention to both their clients and to their searches.

They focus solely on placing in-house candidates which allows them to give their clients a bespoke experience in filling their legal needs.

Their matchmaking approach ensures that clients are paired with candidates who not only have great credentials but who are also a good cultural fit for a growing company.

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Some of the Topics Covered by Robert Krayn in this Episode

  • The problem Talkiatry is aimed at solving and how they're doing it
  • The personal experience that prompted Robert to start Talkiatry
  • How Robert approached market research before founding Talkiatry and the barriers he had to tackle
  • How Robert ended up partnering with his co-founder Dr. Georgia Gaveras
  • How Robert approached partnering with major health insurance companies
  • Their strategy for onboarding senior-level psychiatrists
  • Customer acquisition for Talkiatry and focusing on effective patient acquisition
  • How Robert's financial background helped him bootstrap Talkiatry and why they are considering raising capital
  • Robert's transition to becoming a founder
  • How COVID-19 forced Robert and the Talkiatry team to be flexible
  • How Robert invests in himself
  • Robert's decision-making process
  • What kinds of investors Talkiatry is looking to align with
  • How Robert recharges and prioritizes his mental health
  • The big vision for Talkiatry and the stigma and barriers to access they are working to dissolve


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