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74% of U.S. mothers feel mentally worse since the pandemic began, according to a recent survey. One startup is looking to change that. Yohana CEO & Founder Yoky Matsuoka joins the Yahoo Finance Live panel to discuss.
- COVID has really taken a toll on parents. There's a recent survey out from Motherly, that's a lifestyle brand. And it found that nearly 3/4 of moms say that they feel mentally worse since the pandemic began and also 97% feel burned out, at least some of the time.
Well, there's a new wellness company, Yohana, that's looking to give busy families the help they need. They're also trying to help parents juggle the many tasks that they have throughout the day. And for that, we want to bring in the CEO and founder of Yohana. We have Yoky Matsuoka.
Yoky, it's great to have you here on Yahoo Finance. And this is something I was reading through what your company does and certainly something that seems appealing to me as a mother. I think I could really benefit from some of the services that you're offering. But just walk us through exactly what Yohana does and how you came up with this idea?
YOKY MATSUOKA: Sure, so Yohana is a new wellness company focusing on helping families prioritize well-being and be able to be present for each other. Our first offering is called the Yohana membership. It is a tech-enabled personal assistant serving to design-- it is really designed for busy parents to get their mental load off.
I really feel that when we talk about well-being we focus on exercise and eating and sleeping, but I think one of the things that we really have to take care of is that mental load. That feeling of overwhelmedness.
- Yoky, we should point out to people that Yohana, the wait-list, is up and running for when it comes to their cities and that they can sign up if they want to take part in this.
But help us understand exactly how it works, because I'm thinking today's technology enables this in ways that very early attempts at this kind of assistance-- I think it was Jeeves or neighborhood concierge didn't work. How does the technology that you have today work and allow for somebody to get screened and then run the errands for us?
YOKY MATSUOKA: Yeah, so this is a monthly subscription service. And it is launching-- our first offering is launching in Seattle. It is $149 a month, which is about $5 a day, I'd compare it with a cup of Starbucks coffee a day, to have a partner who you can delegate your everyday things that you have to do.
Some examples of tasks that you might delegate to include, you know, I'm a working mom of four. I've got lots and lots of to-dos on my list. Categories that I can think of are one mundane things that just pile up, right. I have four kids worth of haircuts appointments that I have to make constantly. I have to send snacks to my kids sports activities. I have to get them from stores and then those things, sure, are a lot of work. I'm blessed to get some help getting those things.
I don't have to think about what to get. Somebody to just really be able to show up in the right place with the right snacks. Renewing things like driver's license, passports. Those things just keep coming. That's sort of the mundane kind of list that I have to do, in addition to just being with kids and then working other kind of to-dos that I need to do but I tend to put off, like preparing for holidays. Halloween's coming up. Kids want to dress up.
I always do those things last-minute, because I wait till, you know, and then I realize, like, I screwed up this holiday yet again. Those are things that we can really do a better job by being proactive, stay on top of it, and then be important to get those things done. And most importantly, the wellness. Wellness things we don't even put on our to-do list sometimes, right?
A date night. We've got to go in and just have some time for ourselves. Meditation retreat. I never even thought about those things or finally even community outreach. I want to be part of the community. I want to feel the belongingness and then really contributing to society. Those are things that make me feel that wellness. Those are the things that we can also help you achieve.
- Yoky, I think when we were all listening to the list of everything that parents face day in and day out, certainly everyone can use a little bit of help. You mentioned that you're launching in Seattle. What does the roadmap look like for your expansion plans? Where do you plan on offering your service next?
YOKY MATSUOKA: Yeah, we, of course, want to go to every city nationwide. We are thinking about going, you know, we have a long list of other cities to go too and then we look forward to expanding quickly.
- As you expand, do you anticipate tailwind, not tailwinds but headwinds from potential clients, because what you're describing sounds like a godsend. It changes the honey-do list. Honey do this, honey do that. But I think there might be apprehension. How do you get over the apprehension of some parents to bring someone into their world who screened and yet is coming into their world?
YOKY MATSUOKA: Yeah, I have been there. You know, I had hesitated to delegate things to someone else of something that I feel is very private. You know, I've been there when I finally decided to hire a cleaner. I couldn't let go. I cleaned first before the cleaner came. And then overtime I stopped picking up slowly. It was a process that I've gone through. I feel that that's a headwind for a lot of families to go over.
We want to be there. We want to build that trust. Those assistants that we have they're going to work with you. We are providing dedicated assistant to and to each member. And then to make sure that personal assistant who, you know, that you can start to feel like, it's OK. Initially, you might clean up before people come but over time you are letting go and then more and more things. Look at that.
- Yoky Matsuoka, CEO and founder of Yohana. It's a great idea. We wish you all the best. Thanks so much for taking the time to join us here on Yahoo Finance.