In 2019 companies founded solely by women earned 2.8% of the total capital invested in venture-backed startups in the US making fighting for a place in the male-dominated tech scene one of the toughest challenges for feminism.
However, the growth of entrepreneurs, companies and products describing themselves as “FemTech” sheds hope that perhaps innovation in the tech sector is no longer exclusively for outdated older men in Silicon Valley. In 2018 the FemTech market was valued at 17 Billion USD and this is just the tip of the iceberg, with the market forecast to hit nearly 50 billion USD by 2025.
When fighting gender imbalances we must understand that equality does not mean equivalence. Inherently the experiences and needs of different sexes both mentally and physically are different. As product creators, investors and consumers we must understand and appreciate this. Innovation and creativity are being used to provide both mass market and niche solutions to the complex, deeply personal and variety of experiences and life stages females bodies and minds go through.
Here at Gallium Ventures, we utilise our strategic insight and growth-hacking ethos to help nurture and grow the startups whose potential often goes unrecognised by archaic VC’s blind to the complex health needs of different genders. Some companies around the world we are keeping an eye on (and you should too):
- Livia – Israel, A small, discreet wearable that has been backed by evidence from clinical studies to immediately reduce the pain of cramping during menstruation. Allowing women a natural and reusable alternative to pills, this device uses unique micro-pulses that cause nerve stimulation.
- Clue – Germany, An advanced app designed to track monthly menstruation cycles allowing women to see their past, current and future trends. Offering personalised analysis and insights based on scientific research to help manage menstruation symptoms and fertility tracking.
- inne – Germany, Hormone-based mini lab that allows women to understand and listen to their own bodies with a simple saliva swab. Understanding hormone cycles that control the body enable women to understand their fertility.
- Ava Women – Switzerland/United States, A digital women’s health company bringing together AI and clinical research to give insights on reproductive lives based on data-driven and scientific tracking. The bracelet is worn during sleep and offers personalised info on fertility, pregnancy and general health.
- Elvie – United Kingdom, A wearable silent and subtle breast pump that can fit in your bra to pump at any time while getting on with other jobs. Hassle and cord free, its designed by engineers, scientists and real women’s insights.
- LactApp – Spain, An app that supports women through the breast feeding process through personalised guides, advice, answers and one to one consultations from trained lactation experts.
- Emjoy – Spain, Created to reduce stigmas around female sexuality and bridge the orgasm gap this is a science backed audio app designed and created for women to “explore and expand their sexual wellbeing”. Providing a sex therapist in your pocket the app offers guided practices, science-backed theory sessions and narrated sensual short stories to help bring improve female sexual pleasure.
- Vibio – United Kingdom, Fighting the stigma around female sexual enjoyment this is a smart wearable vibrator called Ella which syncs with an app via Bluetooth allowing women to personalise their “vibes”.
- Nextgen Jane – United States, Developing a smart tampon called Jane “a way to listen to the molecular messages from the tissues of your body” to highlight and understand early signs of disease.
- Lattice Medical – France, A biomedical start-up that uses 3D technology developed with CHU Lille-France that allows adipose tissue to naturally regenerate. Using just one surgery breasts can be entirely reconstructed using only the partiens tissue rather than other foreign bodies.
- Gennev – United States, An online clinic to help women deal with the vast symptoms that menopause brings. Offering holistic solutions in the form of products, community, personalised assessments, health coaches and online appointments with doctors.
- Grace – United Kingdom, A subtle bracelet wearable 24/7 that tracks hot flushes experienced by women due to hormonal fluctuations. Detecting hot flushes before they even happen means the bracelet begins automatically cooling. A partnered app allows further analysis to better understand personal patterns.
Well Being Tech
- Peanut – United Kingdom, For mums (and those soon to be!) to connect and communicate with those going through a similar life stage. Matching through common interests, location offers a support network to help during a highly emotional, personal and new experience that can be daunting to face alone.
- Lisa Health – United States, Using science backed evidence offers personalised support and advice for women going through the journey of menopause based on a free online assessment. Providing tips thorough personalised plans, resources and an online community for physical and mental symptom management.