A taxi home; food from your favourite restaurant; and now Botox. What do all these things have in common? You can order them from an app on your smart phone, thanks to the efforts of S. Mark McKenna and his new venture, OVME.
The service is designed to benefit both customers who want a top-up and doctors with time on their hands. Simply search for a doctor in your area, and request them to come to you for a home visit or online consultation. It’s as simple as that.
The OVME app won’t just be used for Botox, but for a number of procedures all centred around the idea of keeping you looking your best. Dermatologists and other specialists can provide chemical peels, facials, sculpting, hair removal, and more through the OVME platform.
For now, the app is still in development, but Dr. Mark McKenna is already providing services through the OVME membership website.
Creating a brand
The idea behind his new venture, McKenna explains, came from the fact that there was no single service provider or outlet that could provide a service like Botox across the country. This, he felt, was a big hole in the market, given that Botox has such strong brand recognition. The solution? A service that can run nationwide, using the power of the gig economy to give doctors the chance to control their own schedules.
The OVME service puts emphasis on customer experience more than any other part of the business, ensuring that customers will always get exactly what they want. Everything is done through a patient coordinator, so patients can fill in forms at home and do online consultations rather than having to take time out of their busy lives to sit in waiting rooms.
The doctors take it from there, bringing patients in to clinics or doing home visits to ensure that their experience is as comfortable as possible. By connecting doctors with patients across a network of providers, much like the Uber or Airbnb models, the app will cut overheads and allow doctors to work as and when they wish. Patients, meanwhile, can schedule what they want whenever they want it.
If you feel like you’ve heard the name Dr. Mark McKenna in connection with this kind of service before, it’s because you have. His previous business, ShapeMed, was a fee-for-service medical practice which focused on both aesthetics and wellness in combination.
First launched in 2007, it allowed medically-trained McKenna to slowly branch out from the first Atlanta office to build more and more clinics, all under the ShapeMed name. They proved to be a phenomenal success, adopting marketing tactics that worked well to spread their good reputation far and wide.
By 2014, McKenna had an offer from Lifetime Fitness to sell the business and incorporate it into their existing services. A $4.4 million deal saw all ShapeMed clinics moving inside existing Lifetime Fitness properties to become part of their brand, with McKenna staying on as director. That position lasted for a year before the whole company was acquired by two private equity firms, prompting McKenna to step down, spend some time with family, and ponder his next venture.
This was not his only business success. In fact, he has a history of hard work translating into good investments and financial highs.
Medical school path
When McKenna went to medical school, he began to see that doctors were starting to make less money than they had previously. As a doctor-to-be, this concerned him: was he really going into the right profession?
As a student, he began moonlighting at prisons to do physical examinations of inmates at $50 an hour. He worked hard, saved up these earnings, and reinvested all of them into real estate in New Orleans. He began to buy properties, which is how he ended up becoming a businessman instead of a doctor.
After five years of working in his father’s medical practice, his real estate business was booming, and he left the company to stand on his own two feet. That empire was worth between $4 million and $5 million when Hurricane Katrina struck, destroying and flooding many of his properties.
Millions of dollars were wiped off his company’s value overnight, but this setback did little to phase him. He got into the business of buying damaged property at low prices, renovating and fixing it, and flipping it for a profit.
Soon after, McKenna made the decision to leave the world of real estate behind and the challenges that were now facing builders and owners in the still-ravaged New Orleans. Taking the profit from his business with him, he made the move to Atlanta, where the ShapeMeds story began.
Bright future ahead
Now, the future looks bright yet again for the entrepreneur. The OVME venture has raised $4 million in investments to open two clinics – in Atlanta and Nashville – and develop the mobile app.
After considering various names, including Face Medical, the company settled on OVME for the pronunciation. Said “of me”, it reflects the company’s focus on the customer and their determination to provide them the best service possible.
Previously, patients might have gone to a doctor, a dermatologist, and a cosmetic surgeon separately. Now, however, McKenna hopes that the freelance medical practitioners signed up for his service will provide a one-stop shop. Patients can log in to the app, choose their procedures, and organise everything without having to juggle multiple clinics and services.
While competition may be strong in local markets, McKenna believes the OVME brand’s strength will be in its nationwide coverage. No one is providing a service quite like this on the national level – and that means there is a clear chance for OVME to take the reins and become the number one player in the wellness and aesthetics industries. It will be a real coup for an entrepreneur who sees the need for an upgrade to our cosmetic services – and a leap into brand-new technologies.
Connect with Dr. Mark Mckenna on Twitter to learn more about Atlanta’s OVME
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