Innside the head of Delphine Groll, co-fondatrice et COO de Nabla

For the third episode of our What Health podcast, we had Delphine Groll, co-founder and COO of Nabla.

A lifelong entrepreneur, even through her previous experiences, Delphine considers entrepreneurship as a state of mind rather than a status.

Published on 04 July 2022 at 03h50


This article is based on the third episode of our What Health podcast, with guest Delphine Groll. To listen to the episode go to Spotify and don't forget to subscribe to receive a notification when the next episode is released, as well as put 5 stars to help us emerge. 

For the third episode of our What Health podcast, we had Delphine Groll, co-founder and COO of Nabla. 

A lifelong entrepreneur, even through her previous experiences, Delphine considers entrepreneurship as a state of mind rather than a status. 

Energetic, ambitious, enthusiastic, she is a company director, a woman, a sportswoman and a mother. In this podcast, she shares with us some of the keys to doing everything at once and seeing things through to the end, despite the difficulties and obstacles. 

Trust, entourage, organization, commitment, humility, technology, meetings, etc. With Vincent Puren, she discusses all these topics that have allowed her to succeed so far, in politics, lobbying, finance, business and today at Nabla. 

Nabla is an application dedicated to women, more precisely to women's health. 

Based on a strong technology, reinforced by artificial intelligence and machine learning, the startup offers a library of content specifically dedicated to women's health, written by hand- picked health professionals. 

The Nabla application was designed to allow women to exchange directly with partners, health professionals, general practitioners, gynaecologists, nutritionists or nurses and to obtain a real follow-up of their file and their pathologies, over time. 

A multidisciplinary and ultra-competent team, a board composed of experts recognized by their peers, several rounds of financing, dozens of partners, and even more clients, Nabla ticks all the boxes of a scale-up in the making. We asked Delphine about her perception and commitment to creating a sustainable company and, more importantly, the keys to modeling a strong entrepreneurial mindset. 

Here are some of the basics that came out of our exchange with Delphine. Find the full audio version here and the full video here. 

Listening and humility 

From the beginning of the conversation between Vincent Puren and Delphine Groll, Delphine never stopped talking about 'listening'. 

In his current entrepreneurial adventure, Nabla, it all starts with the meeting with his partners and in particular Alexandre Lebrun, current co-founder of Nabla and former founder of, bought by Facebook. 

It matched right away. Because transparency, listening and communication were immediately part of the relationship they built. A common vision, a shared enthusiasm and the adventure was then possible together. 

Of course, it doesn't stop there. Delphine explains that, as for an old couple, it is important to test, challenge, learn, relearn, correct the other, correct oneself to build together. But it is above all a question of listening, to then set  up a  strong   company together. 

Delphine, Alexandre and Martin Raison, the third co-founder, do not simply apply this lesson among themselves, but have made it a golden rule for the company. 

Delphine confides that it is precisely listening to the patient that motivated them to develop a BtoC model in a system where startups are mostly BtoB, due to a French health system in which patients are not used to paying for their care, which could therefore have created a considerable obstacle. 

She explains that healthcare is one of the only sectors where it is really necessary to go through BtoC. Indeed, for the founders of Nabla, a company that doesn't make sense with end users, in this case patients, didn't make sense. It's a sensitive field, you have to understand where to go by taking into account the signals, the patient/healthcare professional relationships, the expectations, the reticence, in order to develop a technology that addresses a real problem. 

Convinced that listening leads to commitment, the most complex point in health care, since today it is a real challenge to engage the patient throughout his treatment. Indeed, today the rate of non-adherence is 50%. That is to say, one patient out of two does not complete his treatment, for many reasons, in particular the relationship with his health professional or the lack of information about his disease(s). There is therefore a real need to focus more on the needs of patients and this must begin with listening. 

To build a sustainable company, employees must also be listened to. In any case, at Nabla this is fundamental. Delphine confides that listening is what motivates and galvanizes her team. It also helps to consolidate any project, since her collaborators are all experts in their field, and therefore legitimate, if not more so than her. 

Finally, listening must also be the golden rule for health professionals who join the platform to accompany patients. Indeed, Delphine confides to us in a confident tone, that the health professionals are chosen according to their skills and expertise obviously, but also and above all according to the listening and empathy that they dedicate to their patients.   

A good product thanks to a good team, on a human scale 

Nabla currently employs 35 people full time. Delphine aspires to keep a human-sized team for as long as possible. 

She explains that, for her, the grail is a small company, which explodes while remaining reasonable in size. She also cites the startup Sorare, which has developed a game based on blockchain technology, world fantasy football, in which players buy, sell, trade and manage a virtual team thanks to digital player cards; today the company has a staff of about 50 people and yet the startup continues to grow and attract new investors (including Kylian Mbappé last week). 

Indeed, according to Delphine, each individual must be involved as closely as possible with the product. More hierarchy means more process and thus a loss of agility and speed for the company. 

Moreover, good relations in a team are essential to the success of what is undertaken. Delphine is convinced that a good idea with a mediocre team will be destroyed. A bad idea with a very good team, on the other hand, will either be scrapped or improved. 

However, a good team is not enough to set up a project like Nabla. For that, you also need a perfect technology. 

This is why Delphine, Martin and Alexandre have created essential and defined poles. 

  • Machine Learning Team 
  • Web team 
  • Mobile team (Android and IOS) 

The product team gravitates in a very transversal way in these different poles. 

The goal? To make the technology and therefore the experience useful, easy and intelligent. 

Moreover, Nabla's real differentiation today lies in the data. All the people in the different divisions are experts in their field but also master the use of data, which amplifies their importance in the project and their knowledge to develop a really useful app. 

Thanks to their skills and their listening skills, the application has been tested, reworked and re-tested many times in-house to offer a truly user-friendly experience in line with the expectations expressed by users. 

The culture of feedback 

"Feedback is a gift." That's probably what you'll hear the most in this podcast. This is one of Delphine and her associates' motto. 

It is first and foremost an internal reality, on the part of its employees, whether for HR or more technical questions. 

This is all the more true for the health professionals who use the application. They are the real prescribers of Nabla, so it is with them that it must be built and for that, the feedback is essential. 

Finally, it is especially a reality on the patient's side, in other words, on the end user's side. The patient's feedback is what counts the most. It is for him that the application is developed, it is to his needs that the technology must stick. If the patient's opinion is not taken into account and listened to, then it is certain that the rate of non-adherence will remain, that the rate of new patient users will not increase and that the project will stagnate. 

Delphine doesn't hide the fact that this is one of the most difficult things to put in place. It's not easy to confront your ideas with potentially negative feedback, but it's essential and necessary to save time and get the need and the solution to the users, whether in health or in any other field. 

She confides that this is something she applies not only to her professional life, but also to her personal life. Feedback is based on extreme communication and according to her it is the key to having an organized and happy life. Married to an entrepreneur, mother of two, with an active life, she says that to do everything at once you have to communicate, get organized, get help and trust. Ultimately, these are the same lessons that are applied in her life as an entrepreneur. 

The commitment 

Finally, let's talk about commitment. 

A word that comes up frequently in the discussion between Vincent and Delphine. 

It puts commitment at the heart of everything. Commitment to patients, employees, healthcare professionals and investors. 

In the end, this stems from the various points we have just mentioned. Listening, trust, teamwork, expertise. All these things together will help to solve the needs of patients who, today, still lack guidance, support and care. 

Bringing a real brick into the health care system to make it more solid. 

To demonstrate to investors that health, and particularly women's health, is a fundamental issue in which it is crucial to invest money, time and people. 

It is through their commitment, their past and present determination that the 3 co-founders have succeeded in raising 17 million euros, since to date, all of Nabla's investors are their acquaintances. 

It is the commitment that gives rhythm to Nabla's daily life and Delphine's life. 

She reminds us that if she fails tomorrow with Nabla, it is not the failure that she will remember, but the risk-taking, the willingness to do and the objectives that will have been achieved and that will have had an impact on the lives of patients and the health system. 

Nabla's commitment and desire to make a difference has led it to add another string to its bow by developing its SDK (Software Development Kit), aimed at healthcare organizations (startups, large groups, scale-ups). 

What does this mean? 

It is a library of technological bricks that allow a service to function: chat/ messaging, teleconsultation (web and mobile), doctor platform, encapsulated by machine learning. 

On the other hand, if a company does not want to go through the Nabla SDK, but is interested in the Nabla API, such as data extraction or structuring, that is also possible. 

Thus, Nabla offers the possibility for companies to go through its SDK to launch a digital health project from scratch, or for those more advanced, but who would need to solidify their technology, to choose the API, a real toolbox. In a way, it is the Stripe of Health. 



Through this podcast and this article, we wanted to share with you the state of mind of an entrepreneur who is more than committed to improving our healthcare system. 

An inspiring exchange, especially when you know that Delphine was able to undertake and co-create an e-health startup, despite not coming from this field. Proof that it is possible, with hard work and convictions, to go through with a project, even if the risk seems high. 

In fact, it is Delphine who reminds us in this exchange that "The worst risk is the one of not taking any". 

To view the podcast in pictures it's here, otherwise, go to our Spotify page for the audio version. 

Don't forget to subscribe and leave us a comment. See you soon for the next podcast.