Spotlight on: Cake, StartHub’s Startup to Watch for March 2017

March 13, 2017

Each month as part of StartHub Startups to Watch Program we connect with the winning company to learn more about them.  Our March Startup to Watch is Cake, an end-of-life planning web platform​.  Recently we had the pleasure of interviewing Suelin Chen, Cofounder and CEO of Cake.  Here’s what we learned:

StartHub: Tell us about your company. What does Cake do?

Cake ( offers the easiest way to do advance care and end-of-life planning. Our mobile-friendly web platform guides you through the planning process and makes it easy to share your plans with your loved ones. 

StartHub: What is your background?

My background is in healthcare, entrepreneurship, and business: I earned my PhD from MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital in medical technologies to prevent over-treatment in cancer, then served as a business and transaction advisor to healthcare companies at IMS Health. I am also the former Director of The Lab @ Harvard, a platform supporting student entrepreneurs at Harvard University.

StartHub: How did you come up with the idea for Cake?  Who is your target customer?

During my years working in healthcare, it became clear to me that end-of-life care is completely broken, yet it is this universal thing we all experience.  It seemed obvious to me that communication about end-of-life preferences should be facilitated with a cloud-based digital tool.  We serve healthcare and employee benefits companies, and our users include both the baby boomer who wants to make sure to never burden their adult children, as well as the millennial who is either starting a family for the first time or who is worried about their parents.     

StartHub: How do you think Cake is going to disrupt the market? What are the main differentiators between you and your competitors?

Cake is the easiest way to do end-of-life planning.  We understand that most people don't know what they should be doing or what types of things to think about, so we provide a great deal of guidance and help the user discover their preferences. There is huge value in aggregating and simplifying what is currently a very fragmented and complicated market.  

StartHub: Who are your main investors?

We are fortunate to work with a number of angel investors who specialize in consumer tech and healthcare.

StartHub: Why did you decide to start your business in Boston? How long has your company been around?

With its world-class hospitals and academic institutions, Boston is an ideal place to start a company in digital health.  My co-founder Mark and I met at MIT Hacking Medicine's Grand Hack (where we won 1st place) in 2015.

StartHub: What resources in the startup community have contributed to the success of Cake?

MassChallenge, PULSE@MassChallenge, InTeahouse, Solaria Labs 

StartHub: How do you use StartHub professionally?

We use it to keep abreast of what is going on in our startup community.

StartHub: What are the next steps for Cake?  

We are laser focused on delighting our customers and users.  We are deploying with Blue Cross Blue Shield of MA's and Harvard Pilgrim's employees over the next couple of months. 

StartHub: What is the most important thing our readers should know about Cake?

End-of-life planning is actually about wanting you and your loved ones to live your best lives; taking care of your end-of-life planning is truly a gift to everyone you care about.  We want to highlight that end-of-life planning is a positive endeavor that honors life. Read Complete Article