Ten years ago the word “Femtech” didn’t even exist. Today Femtech, female-focused technology startups designed to support women’s health is a major investment category.
These years Femtech startups have grown to become some of the hottest startups.
What is Femtech?
Femtech is an acronym for Female technology – are startups working on women’s health.
Interest for Femtech has spiked among the public and venture capitalists. Nowadays, femtech is a term applied to a category of software, diagnostics, products, and services that use technology often to focus on women’s health.
Femtech sector includes:
- Fertility solutions
- Period-tracking app
- Pregnancy and nursing care
- Women’s sexual wellness
- Reproductive system health care
- General healthcare
- Chronic conditions and hormonal disorders
According to a Frost & Sullivan report, global venture capital funding and investments across femtech is estimated to reach $9 billion by 2024.
“The market potential is huge,” said Michelle Tempest, a partner at the London-based health care consultancy Candesic and a psychiatrist by training. “There’s definitely an increasing appetite for anything in the world which is technology, and a realization that female consumer power has arrived — and that it’s arrived in health care.”
Leading Femtech Startups
It is a Berlin-based menstrual tracking app. Its founder Ida Tin was the first to coin the term “Femtech” back in 2016 and her company has raised €27.4m. The startup is not only an early femtech pioneer, but also does a good job of showcasing academic research and promoting conversations about female health on its website.
2. Natural Cycles
It is still the only mobile application which is a certified contraceptive in Europe. The company helps women track body temperature to predict when they are the most fertile and not. Founded in Sweden it now boasts 1.5m users worldwide with the UK as its biggest market followed by the US and Sweden. Funding: €34m.
It was founded in Switzerland and has raised a massive €42m. Its multi-sensor bracelet allows women to predict fertile days while they are sleeping. No more temperature testing or counting days.
4. Grace Health
It is a Swedish period and fertility tracker for women in emerging markets. It has recently added a digital women’s health clinic to it. It has attracted well-known angel investors such as Cherry Ventures’ Sophia Bendz, Blossom Capital’s Louise Samet and most recently Vostok New Ventures for a total of €2.3m.
It was founded in Germany and it could also become a real competitor to Natural Cycles with a slightly different approach to the same problem. Instead of finding out your most fertile days by taking your temperature, with Inne you do a saliva test. The startup has raised €8.8m from Blossom Capital among others.
6. Juno Bio
It is a biotechnology startup founded based in London. It uses machine learning and bioinformatics to analyse and predict vaginal microbiomes’ impact on female fertility. It has won funding from Ada Ventures and Entrepreneur First.
It brings feminine hygiene products directly to your doorstep. Started in London, Freda is a subscription service that delivers organic menstrual-hygiene products across Europe.
It is a UK subscription service of tailored organic period products. It has raised €7.3m in total. It has also developed its own product: a “tampliner”, which is a tampon and a liner in one.
It is a UK startup that can tell you which hormonal contraceptive will work for you. It has raised a pre-seed round from angel investors including Cambridge Angels.
It is a London-based startup that is trying to help women suffering from period pain. The startup’s first product is a newly developed tampon that uses CBD to help tackle period cramps as an alternative to traditional painkillers.
It was founded in France and has developed period underwear, similar to American startup Thinx. No need for tampons or pads! The startup has managed to attract the Paris-based investor and startup support network The Family as investors.
It is an Israeli startup using what it says is a clinically-proven, cannabinoid-based solution for gynaecological treatments, such as Endometriosis.
It is a breastfeeding startup founded in Dublin. It has developed a breastfeeding monitor in a nipple shield that shows how much milk the baby is drinking. The startup has raised €3.2m in total and its product is soon on sale in Ireland.
It is a Tallinn-based app helping pregnant women through their pregnancy. Instead of having generic content, it is generating information based on the users’ own data. Velmio says it will get better over time as it analyses lifestyle data from a diverse range of pregnant women and is just about to launch its product. (New to our 2020 list)
It is a UK-based maker of a connected breastfeeding pump and a pelvic floor trainer. Having raised a whopping €45m, it is one of the most successful femtech startups over the past decade. It has also done wonders for starting a more open conversation about pelvic floor training.
It is a breastfeeding startup founded in Spain, providing information and a community helping women deal with problems around breastfeeding. Amazingly, it’s used by one out of four breastfeeding mothers in Spain, according to the company.
17. Kheiron Medical Technologies
It is a UK medtech startup that helps radiologists detect breast cancer earlier using deep learning (AI). It has raised €32m from Atomico, Hoxton Ventures, Greycroft Partners, Connect Ventures and others.
18. Lattice Medical
It is a French startup that uses bio-engineering to treat breast cancer survivors. “Matisse” breast implants consist of 3D printed biomaterials and allow a natural reconstruction of the breast. Lattice Medical has raised €2.3m.
It is an Israeli-based startup, which has developed a “handheld smartphone AI device to spot cervical cancer”. The company has raised $26m from a number of biotech investors.
Bloomlife develops prenatal care solutions designed to improve the health of moms and babies. The company’s solutions combine pregnancy-specific wearables with data analytics to reassure moms and to provide doctors with better data to earlier predict and manage pregnancy complications. Their wearable monitor is a lightweight patch that non-invasively tracks important health parameters of the mom and baby throughout pregnancy, for example, fetal movement, fetal heart rate, contractions, maternal health. The device connects to a smartphone app and backend cloud analytics, enabling population health management for providers.
Flo is an AI-powered women’s health platform that encompasses accurate cycle predictions, personalized daily health insights, and a closed secure community of experts and peers. Flo meets the needs of women of all ages and goals, from periods to menopause, from pregnant women to young moms, and is truly a one-stop health solution for women during an entire reproductive cycle. Flo prioritizes safety and keeps sharp focus on being a reliable platform to which women can entrust their most intimate health-related concerns. Flo is number 1 in the “Health & itness” category in the U.S. App Store. They are the world’s fastest-growing femtech startup and women’s ultimate solution for improving health and wellbeing. The company was awarded the Red Herring Top 100 North America in 2017.
Kindbody operates a health and tech company intended to offer fertility services and treatments for the modern woman. It offers a full range of services including intrauterine insemination, in-vitro fertilization, donor support, egg freezing, and embryo freezing, enabling women to improve their overall health and wellbeing. Kindbody provides end-to-end fertility services from standard gynecological care to conception, nutrition, and mental wellness options in reimagined clinics with access to community events. They offer best-in-class price points and are in-network with most major insurances.
“Sex is complicated – let’s change that” is the motto of this colourful app which is looking to normalise conversations around sex and promote female pleasure as a part of everyday wellbeing. Ferly offers micropodcasts and bite-sized articles, all produced at the company’s Hackney base.
24. Moody Month
This app targets women who want to better understand their moods. Combining cycle tracking and mental health analysis, Moody Month offers personalised advice for women which goes beyond information to actually helping women change their lives for the better.
This Swedish company promoting information for pregnant women has impressive credentials. Not only was Bonzun developed with midwives, but it has backing from both the World Health Organisation and UNICEF. After launching in China, it was downloaded 2 million times and won founder Bonnie Roupé a slew of entrepreneurship awards.
This San Francisco-based company views periods as a natural process, rather than something to be stigmatised. To that end Cora sells organic tampons and sanitary pads, even wrapped in soft packaging so they don’t make noise if you’re trying to be discreet in a public bathroom.
Menopause is the time at which a woman’s period stops, which usually occurs between the ages of 40 and 58. Even though it is a natural process, around 85% of women have experienced menopause-related symptoms in their lifetime, such as hot flashes, sleep disturbance, mood changes, and even severe complications like death. Wanting to make menopause care and education more accessible to all parts of Australia, Dr. Kelly Teagle founded WellFemme as a platform which delivers online menopause and perimenopause treatment, telehealth consultations, and lifestyle recommendations.
Modibodi is a Sydney-based startup working to fight body shaming by creating comfortable leak-proof apparel, underwear, and swimwear. Through spreading the positivity, boosting confidence, and providing comfort to women during menstruation, Modibodi is transforming the idea that periods, sweat, and incontinence are shameful by promoting them as just something we go through as humans. Besides empowering women, Modibodi also donates a small percentage of every purchase towards causes including the prevention of Australian Bushfires, and support for healthcare professionals working during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Around 1 in 5 people will contract at least one form of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in their lifetime, while some will present symptoms, most will not. If an STD goes undetected for a prolonged period of time, it can lead to severe consequences like male and female infertility, and even blindness. Ferne helps women take charge of their own bodies. Ferne is the first online sexual platform in Singapore that offers at-home health screening kits for STDs, other reproductive health services, and online consultations. They also partner with other clinics around Singapore, for those who prefer to get their screenings done at a clinic. Individuals are also able to post a question anonymously on their platform regarding anything sexual health related, and will be answered by one of the company’s doctors.
On average, a newborn needs to drink 14-22 oz of milk per day, which means a mother needs to pump milk every 3-4 hours, and each pump takes 15 to 30 minutes. Almost 61% of people believe it is unacceptable for a woman to breastfeed in public areas, this causes a lot of mothers to feel like they do not have enough time in their day. With the inability to breastfeed in public and the burden of holding down a job and looking after their families, Youha’s wearable breast pump allows mothers more mobility to be able to freely walk around in public and complete their tasks while they pump their milk. Youha’s breast pump also won the Bronze Award during the 2021 Hong Kong Smart Design Awards’ Baby and Mother Care Design Category.
Around 1 in 8 women will suffer from breast cancer, 1 in 39 will die from it, and 50% of breast cancer symptoms are often missed by mammographies. These statistics may seem daunting, but with early detection, a person’s survival rate will increase to 80-90%. Cyrcadia is a Hong Kong-based startup which focuses on early detection of breast cancer. Their invention, itBra, is a noninvasive wearable breast monitor that measures thermo-circadian rhythm alternation in skin surface temperature.
Yesmom is a Thailand fertility tech startup, providing at-Home Blood Testing Kits for females to understand their body more. Examining 6 hormone levels- the AMH, FSH, Thyroid stimulating hormone, FT4, prolactin, and testosterone, this test kit will test the amount of eggs present, the age you will hit menopause, and fertility outcomes. Simply order a test kit, collect your sample, and have your report delivered to you through an app.
This app was born in Barcelona under the guidance of Andrea Oliver. It focuses on the problems that women may face when it comes to exploring and enjoying their sexuality. Through a personalised experience and by using tools such as autoeroticism and pleasure awareness, the app aims to help women get more acquainted with their sexuality and improve their sexual satisfaction. Sensual narrations and online advice are also offered to enhance important aspects of self-esteem such as self-confidence and self-acceptance. All the app’s contents are in an audio guide format. Emjoy is available on both Google Play and Apple Store.
This app was created by Michelle Kennedy in London. Peanut is designed to help mothers meet other mothers within their community and ease the flow of similar ideas and information sharing. The app promotes meetings between mothers from the same city and its objective is to create a network of women who share the same interests and locations. Either through its chat or meetings, it encourages them to meet with or without children other women living nearby with similar circumstances and share experiences and points of view.
This startup offers virtual fertility clinic services and assistance by expert advisers on pregnancy issues through its app. It aims at improving the chances of pregnancy for both women and couples with conception difficulties. They use artificial intelligence to design personalised fertility treatments based on all the information collected from each case. Apricity works with fertility clinics that are well known for their high success rates, their professionals’ medical excellence, and their commitment to patients.
Period underwear is a hit all over the world. Founded in Spain, Cocorintim is one of the many European startups using textile innovation to improve women’s daily lives. Cocorintim designs and produces absorbent underwear meant for menstruation and minor incontinence. The company, founded by four women, Clara Guasch, Cristina Torres, Eva Polío, Laida Memba Ikuga, rests on three main cornerstones: technology, feminism and sustainability.
Spanish startup Gazella is a fitness app designed specifically for women and their monthly cycles. It aims to revolutionize the way women worldwide practice fitness activities thanks to targeted training plans that automatically adjust based on menstrual-cycle. Whats more, its nutrition side of the app has been designed by Marta Verona, who was winner of MasterChef Spain. The app is available on Google Play and Apple Store, and has gained recognition from media like Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Women’s Health and InStyle.
I hope you found this article interesting and useful!
We have experience in working for FemTech startups. You may find one of the projects – Bwom here. And if you need any help with software development or product ownership, let us know! We love femtech!