WeightWatchers steps into the Ozempic market as the telehealth industry tries to find its footing

Thursday, March 9, 2023 by Snacks
On-screen appointment (Rafael Henrique/Getty Images)

On-screen appointment (Rafael Henrique/Getty Images)

An appetite for growth… WW International (aka: WeightWatchers) has its eye on telehealth. The OG weight-loss biz said it's buying health biz Sequence for $106M. Sequence's members pay $100/month for access to video appointments with docs who can prescribe weight-loss meds like Wegovy. WW says prescription meds can complement its lifestyle-based "points" program.

  • Sell-ehealth: The latest weight-loss push involves a class of drugs that include Wegovy and Ozempic. While Wegovy is FDA-approved for weight management, Ozempic is not (it’s approved to treat diabetes).
  • Hot topic: Elon Musk and Chelsea Handler are just two of several celebs who've said they've taken one of these injectable drugs.
  • StockWatchers: WW's stock jumped nearly 80% after the Sequence deal announcement, but is down 90% over the past five years as subscriptions have sagged.

The doctor is in… your iPhone. Telemedicine boomed during the pandemic, when trips to the doc’s office carried heightened Covid risks. But the path ahead is less clear. While Teladoc and Hims & Hers Health are still seeing some growth, other players like GoodRx saw declines. Meanwhile, scrutiny’s heating up: last year Cerebral paused prescriptions of controlled substances like Adderall after regulators reportedly began investigating. Now, as the Biden admin moves to require in-person doctor visits for prescriptions like Adderall and Oxycontin, the telehealth industry could pivot to cater to a growing demand for weight-loss meds.


You don’t need to buy the skyscraper… sometimes all it takes is a blueprint. WeightWatchers is one of the better-known weight-loss brands, but declining subs suggest it’s lost its star power. Meanwhile, Sequence is relatively unknown with only 24K members. Yet it has the prescription foundation that could help WW build on a growing trend: weight-loss meds prescribed virtually.

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