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Unveiling the Mystery: Who Owns Calm?

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  • Post last modified:11 September 2023

One intriguing question that has been circulating among users of the popular meditation app Calm is, who actually owns the company? Calm, the popular meditation and sleep app, has become a beloved tool for millions seeking relaxation, stress reduction, and improved mental well-being. Many users have found solace in the app’s offerings, but questions remain about its ownership.

Digging into the depths of this mystery, it has been revealed that Calm’s current ownership can be attributed to its co-founders, Michael Acton Smith and Alex Tew. Together, they launched Calm in 2012 with a vision to help people lead calmer and more fulfilling lives.

Key Takeaways:

  • Calm’s ownership has been a mystery for many users, but it can be attributed to its co-founders Michael Acton Smith and Alex Tew.
  • Several investors, including TPG Growth and Sound Ventures, have contributed to Calm’s success, but Acton Smith and Tew hold significant ownership stakes.
  • Calm has become a leader in the meditation and mindfulness industry, helping millions find tranquility in their lives.

The Founding of Calm

Calm was co-founded in 2012 by Alex Tew and Michael Acton Smith. The two entrepreneurs shared a common vision of making meditation accessible to everyone, regardless of their experience level. They recognized the need for a simple and user-friendly platform that could help people manage their stress levels and improve their overall well-being. With this in mind, they set out to create Calm.

From its inception, Calm has been committed to promoting mindfulness and mental health. The founders understood that meditation was a powerful tool for cultivating inner peace and realized that technology could help make this practice accessible to people all over the world. They wanted to create an app that could provide effective guidance to those who were new to meditation and also offer a variety of features to support experienced practitioners.

Calm’s initial platform was a website that provided guided meditations and relaxation techniques. Over time, the founders recognized the potential for mobile devices and decided to develop an app that could be used on-the-go. Since then, Calm has grown to become one of the most popular meditation apps in the world, providing users with access to a wide range of features designed to promote mental well-being.

One of the unique features of Calm is its wide variety of guided meditations, which are tailored to meet the specific needs of users. Whether someone is looking to relax, reduce stress, or improve their sleep, Calm offers guided meditations to meet their needs. The app also provides soothing sounds and music, nature scenes, and breathing exercises to help users focus and feel more centered.

Calm’s commitment to mental well-being has been recognized by its users and industry leaders. The app has received numerous awards for its contributions to mindfulness, including Apple’s App of the Year award in 2017. Its success has also attracted significant funding, with a recent funding round elevating its valuation to unicorn status.

In summary, Calm’s founding by Alex Tew and Michael Acton Smith was a significant event in the history of meditation and mindfulness. Their vision of making meditation accessible to everyone has been realized through the creation of the Calm app, which has helped millions of people around the world manage stress and improve their mental well-being. Through constant innovation and a commitment to user needs, Calm continues to be a leader in the industry, empowering individuals to find peace and tranquility in their lives.

Calm’s Funding Journey

In 2018, a major turning point occurred in the ownership of Calm when it raised $27 million in a funding round led by Insight Venture Partners. This funding allowed Calm to make strategic investments in product development and international expansion, solidifying its position as a major player in the mindfulness and mental wellness space.

The following year, in 2019, Calm announced a successful Series C funding round, raising $88 million. This round was led by TPG Growth, a leading global alternative asset firm, and included participation from existing investors like Insight Venture Partners. The infusion of capital allowed Calm to accelerate its growth plans, enhance its app features, and expand into new markets.

Building on this momentum, in 2020, Calm reached a valuation of $2 billion after another funding round. This round, led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, propelled the company’s valuation to unicorn status, cementing its position as a leader in the mental wellness industry.

Calm’s funding journey showcases the company’s ability to attract support from a diverse range of investors, from Hollywood celebrities like Ashton Kutcher and Leonardo DiCaprio to major global asset management firms. This financial backing has enabled Calm to continually expand its offerings, improve technology, and reach a global audience.

The success of Calm’s funding journey is not only reflected in its financial resources but also in its industry recognition. The app was awarded Apple’s “App of the Year” in 2017, highlighting its positive impact on users’ mental well-being.

In conclusion, Calm’s funding journey has been a critical factor in its continued success and growth. The company’s ability to attract significant investments from various sources has allowed it to innovate and expand its reach, positioning Calm as a prominent player in the field of meditation and sleep.

Rumored Investors

One of the key figures rumored to have invested in Calm is Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher. The tech-savvy actor is known for his investments in various successful startups, including Airbnb and Uber. His interest in Calm could signify a shift towards investing in mental health and well-being tech companies.

Another rumored investor is Marc Benioff, the founder and CEO of Salesforce, a leading customer relationship management platform. Benioff is recognized for his interest in philanthropy and building a stronger, equitable world. With Calm’s mission to promote mental health and well-being, its values align with Benioff and his desire for meaningful investments.

While these are just rumors, the interest from big-name investors like Kutcher and Benioff is a testament to Calm’s potential for growth and success. If true, their investments could give Calm the boost it needs to become an even more prominent player in the mental health tech space.

Strategic Partnership with American Express

Additionally, in 2020, Calm announced a strategic partnership with American Express, a major financial institution known for its range of financial products and services. The partnership aims to provide Calm users with exclusive benefits and rewards when they use their American Express card to purchase Calm’s premium subscription.

Through this collaboration, American Express cardholders can now access a range of benefits, including complimentary access to Calm’s premium content for a limited period, automatic membership in Calm’s loyalty program, and special discounts on Calm’s products and services.

The partnership also includes joint promotions and marketing efforts to encourage more individuals to download and use the Calm app. Cardholders can enjoy exclusive discounts and offers when they sign up for Calm’s premium subscription using their American Express card.

Moreover, the strategic partnership between Calm and American Express provides added value to existing and potential users, enhancing the overall experience of using the app. This collaboration also allows Calm to expand its reach and attract a new segment of customers who value mental well-being and prioritize self-care.

By partnering with American Express, Calm can leverage the financial institution’s expertise in payment services and marketing, while simultaneously reaching a wider audience. American Express, on the other hand, benefits from aligning itself with a mission-oriented company that prioritizes mental health and has a loyal following.

In conclusion, the strategic partnership between Calm and American Express is a significant collaboration that offers added value to customers and showcases the value of prioritizing mental well-being. This partnership allows both companies to leverage their respective strengths and expand their customer base, ultimately driving growth and success in their respective industries.

Secrecy Surrounding Ownership

Despite the rumors and speculations, the true ownership of Calm remains unknown. The secretive nature of the company’s ownership has led to numerous theories and questions about who owns this successful meditation app. The Calm founders, Alex Tew and Michael Acton Smith, have remained tight-lipped about the issue, leaving investors and the public in the dark about the true owners of Calm.

Secrecy surrounding ownership is not a new issue in the tech industry, where companies often prioritize protecting their intellectual property and trade secrets. However, the lack of transparency about Calm’s ownership has raised concerns among investors and users alike. It is unclear whether the founders have deliberately chosen to keep the ownership undisclosed or if there are other reasons behind the veil of secrecy.

The lack of information about Calm’s ownership has also led to speculation about potential investors. Ashton Kutcher and Marc Benioff are among the individuals rumored to have invested in Calm, although there has been no confirmation of these claims. The possibility of celebrity investors has only added to the intrigue surrounding this popular meditation app.

While Calm has achieved significant success and gained a strong following, the secrecy surrounding its ownership has raised questions about accountability and transparency. The Calm founders’ refusal to disclose the true owners of the company has also fueled conspiracy theories and rumors about potential hidden agendas or ulterior motives.

Ultimately, the lack of disclosure regarding Calm’s ownership highlights the challenges of finding a balance between privacy and transparency, particularly in the tech industry. As Calm continues to grow and expand its reach, it remains to be seen whether the company will choose to reveal its true ownership or continue to maintain its secretive nature.

Calm’s Success and Impact

Calm’s success and popularity are undeniable, with the app boasting over 100 million downloads and a valuation exceeding $2 billion. Its user-friendly interface and diverse range of content have made it a top choice for individuals seeking mindfulness and relaxation tools. But Calm’s impact extends beyond the consumer market, as it has also made strides in the corporate space by offering its services to companies striving to enhance employee well-being and productivity.

The positive effects of Calm’s offerings are not just anecdotal; studies have shown that regular use of Calm can reduce stress, improve sleep quality, and enhance overall mental and emotional well-being. As the demand for mindfulness and self-care continues to grow in today’s fast-paced society, Calm’s success and impact are a testament to its mission of helping individuals live healthier and happier lives.

The Focus on Mission

At Calm, being a mission-oriented company is not just a slogan, but a way of life. From the very beginning, we have been committed to helping people improve their mental health and well-being. Our mission to make the world a happier and healthier place guides everything we do.

As a result, our focus on mission has been a key factor in our success. It has allowed us to stay true to our core values and develop products that truly make a difference in people’s lives. By keeping our mission at the forefront, we have been able to create a sense of purpose and motivation that drives our team forward.

Moreover, by putting mental health and well-being first, we are making a positive impact on the world. Through our app, we have helped millions of people overcome stress and anxiety, sleep better, and live happier lives. By prioritizing mission over profit, we are creating a better future for everyone.

The Power of Mission

Being a mission-oriented company is not always easy. It requires sacrifice, hard work, and a willingness to make tough decisions. However, the rewards are significant. By staying true to our mission, we are creating a company that is not only profitable but also socially responsible and sustainable.

Moreover, our focus on mission has allowed us to attract and retain top talent who share our values and are passionate about making a difference. By creating a culture that is mission-driven, we have built a team of dedicated individuals who are committed to our cause.

Ultimately, our focus on mission is what sets us apart from other companies. It is what makes us a leader in the mental health and well-being space and has enabled us to build a loyal following of users and partners.

So, while the mystery surrounding our ownership may persist, our commitment to our mission remains unwavering. At Calm, we will continue to prioritize mental health and well-being and work towards making the world a happier and healthier place.


While the mystery of who owns Calm may continue to intrigue users and industry insiders, it is clear that the app’s impact on the mental health and well-being of millions is far more significant.

From its origins as a website to its status as a unicorn company, Calm has become a leader in the mental health and wellness space. The app’s widespread adoption and high valuation are a testament to its success and impact.

Despite rumors and speculation regarding potential investors and undisclosed ownership, the founders of Calm have remained silent on the matter.

Nevertheless, the app’s focus on its mission and commitment to helping people live healthier and happier lives remains at the forefront. With the support of a major financial institution through its partnership with American Express, Calm has solidified its position as a mission-oriented company.

As we wrap up this article, it is clear that Calm’s impact on mental health and well-being cannot be overstated. Its success is a reflection of its ability to help people across the globe find peace and tranquility in their daily lives.

While the question of ownership may remain unanswered, the legacy of Calm will undoubtedly continue to grow as it positively impacts the lives of millions.


Q: Who are the co-founders of Calm?

A: Calm was co-founded by Alex Tew and Michael Acton Smith.

Q: When did Calm start as a website?

A: Calm started as a website in 2012.

Q: What was Calm’s initial offering on the website?

A: Calm’s initial offering on the website was a “page-a-day” calendar with inspirational quotes and images.

Q: When did Calm become a meditation and mindfulness app?

A: Calm evolved into a meditation and mindfulness app over time.

Q: Who led the funding round that made Calm a unicorn company?

A: Insight Venture Partners led the funding round that made Calm a unicorn company.

Q: Which Hollywood actor is rumored to have invested in Calm?

A: Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher is rumored to have invested in Calm.

Q: Which CEO has been speculated to have invested in Calm?

A: Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has been speculated to have invested in Calm.

Q: What major financial institution partnered with Calm?

A: American Express partnered with Calm.

Q: Has Calm disclosed its ownership details?

A: No, Calm has not publicly disclosed its ownership details.

Q: How many downloads does Calm have?

A: Calm has over 100 million downloads.

Q: What is the valuation of Calm?

A: Calm’s valuation exceeds $2 billion.

Q: What is Calm’s focus as a company?

A: Calm’s focus is on helping people live healthier and happier lives.