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The Ultimate Guide to FemTech Industry

The world has always been challenging for women, especially when women want to bring about change in society. They always had to get the community’s approval for almost everything—from education to suffrage. Even though many things have drastically changed to accommodate women in nearly every business sector and area where men were predominantly leading, women are still subject to inequality and discrimination in several parts of the world. After years of struggles, women are finally seen, heard, and valued in business, education, family, and fields that men once dominated. With the emergence of FemTech in today’s world, hope is on the horizon that the unmet needs of women’s health will be met. 

Given that March is Women’s History Month, this ultimate guide to the FemTech industry brings you everything—from its importance to the challenges it faces to its upcoming opportunities.

What Is FemTech?

First coined in 2016 by Ida Tin, a Danish entrepreneur and author, it is an umbrella portmanteau for products and solutions specifically designed to meet the needs of women’s healthcare. It includes unprecedented and tremendously helpful products for women to seamlessly tackle women-specific health conditions such as menopause, menstrual pain, contraception, fertility, and sexual health.

What Is the Importance of FemTech?

Although millions of women lead the way in various fields—from business to government, there’s a debatable gender health gap that affects every woman who is more often neglected and overlooked even today. The truth is that many women forget their well-being while wearing different hats in their personal and professional lives. 

There’s little question that some areas of women’s healthcare have been treated lightly and culturally blindsided for a very long time. However, only recently, the emergence of FemTech startups transitioned women’s healthcare from niché to mainstream.

  • Designed with Women’s Health and Affordability in Mind 

 Products predominantly focus on bringing the power of technology to accelerate opportunities and innovation in women’s healthcare. 

  • Accessible and Reliable Women’s Health Data

It is a fact that the data obtained from clinical research and medical errors are scattered everywhere, making it hard for innovators to develop products for women’s conditions. However, with FemTech on the rise, women researchers are creating a paradigm shift in handling the data involved in clinical research and trials. 

  • Contribution of Insightful Data for Future Innovation

As more insightful data are now easily available and accessible for clinical research and trials, more innovative and women-centric products will be rolled out shortly. 

What Is FemTech Space Worth?

In just a few years, the FemTech startups gained popularity and undoubtedly democratised healthcare for women across the globe. By leveraging many disruptive technologies, the FemTech trends are finally out of the shadows and set to be a huge distributor to reach a market size of up to $50B by 2025. 

FemTech Market Size and Share

Encompassing a wide range of technology-driven and customer-centric products, the funding and global users of the FemTech startups are growing by leaps and bounds every year. Over 200 FemTech startups worldwide, of which 92% are owned and led by women, FemTech is not just a fad but a market of opportunity and innovation.

Risks and Challenges Involved in FemTech Industry

Though FemTech trends seem promising in the future and years to come, there are some complex challenges and risks involved in the FemTech industry. Here are some challenges that impede various FemTech startups from filling in gaps in women’s health data and achieving gender equality in healthcare: 

  • Lack of Leadership and Investment – Even though women own many FemTech startups, the leadership teams in several startups need female leaders and investors who are not biassed against women’s success in the industry. Despite women accounting for almost half of the world’s population, only 4% of overall funding and research goes to women-specific research. 
  • Serious Dearth of Awareness – Lack of awareness and knowledge on menstrual and cancer screening products sold by FemTech companies poses a significant challenge in reaching more people. 
  • Connectivity Is Still an Issue – Many FemTech startups have been facing problems reaching women in rural areas where the penetration rate of smartphones, the Internet, and wearable devices is low.  
  • Fewer Researchers and Lack of Inclusivity in Clinical Trials and Research – As women’s metabolism is different from men’s, the need for a unique approach and diversity in clinical trials is often overlooked. 

Upcoming Opportunities and the Future of FemTech in the UK

As the FemTech industry is relatively young and nascent, it has a great potential to expand and reach multiple subsegments of women, especially in the low and middle-income countries where the need for FemTech trends is indispensable. Furthermore, with a wide range of innovative FemTech products focused on menstrual, breast cancer, sexual health, and contraception, healthcare is becoming more diverse and affordable to women. As a result, the future of FemTech UK is on an upward trajectory, encouraging more women to become investors, founders, and scientists for healthcare that is preventive, female-specific, and participative.

Top Femtech Startups to Follow

Daye

The Ultimate Guide to Femtech Industry- Daye

An innovative and young FemTech startup founded in 2017, Daye provides affordable monthly subscriptions of period care products such as tampons and ProVoitics—probiotics for vaginal health—that are sustainable and organic. 

  • Founder: Valentina Milanova
  • Founded: 2018
  • Funds Raised: $5.5 M (approximately £4.2M)
  • Employee Number: 11-50 

Micrima

The Ultimate Guide to Femtech Industry- Micrima

By offering a cost-cutting breast cancer screening system, Micrima is redefining cancer diagnostics. Spun out of the University of Bristol has secured five rounds of equity funding, totalling £11M, alongside four Innovate UK grants.

  • Founder: Adrian Waller
  • Founded: 2005
  • Funds Raised: $20.6M (approximately £15.6M)
  • Employee Number: 11-50

Apricity

By leveraging AI and disruptive technologies, Apricity runs a virtual fertility clinic that helps maximise chances of IVF success. One of the leading UK-based FemTech startups that secured a £5.35M equity funding round in 2019 from AXA’s Kamet Ventures fund. 

  • Founder: Dr Cristina Hickman
  • Founded: 2018 
  • Funds Raised: £6M 
  • Employee Number: 11-50 

Balance App

Balance App owned by Dr Louise Newson, a renowned menopause specialist, this FemTech startup empowers women with evidence-based and unbiased information on perimenopause and menopause. By placing the knowledge and expertise in the hands of women who need it, this FemTech allows every woman in every corner of the globe to destigmatise various women’s health conditions for creating gender equality in healthcare. 

  • Founder: Dr Louise Newson 
  • Founded: 2020
  • Funds Raised: Unknown
  • Employee Number: 2-10

Tuune

The Ultimate Guide to Femtech Industry- Tuune

Backed by a pool of scientists, doctors, researchers from all walks of life, Tuune provides birth control methods tailored to its customers’ unique hormonal profiles and lifestyles. Using scientifically proven research papers, this FemTech UK startup predicts the suitable contraceptive methods from its over 250 birth control options. 

  • Founder: Shardi Nahavandi 
  • Founded: 2018 
  • Funds Raised: $4.6M (approximately £3.5M)
  • Employee Number: 11-50

Femtech Makes Gender Equality a Reality

FemTech currently includes data regarding everything from genetic testing to period tracking. By defining the technological products related to women’s health, this new category paves the way to legitimised and comprehensive healthcare for women. Using anonymous data to further the cause, many companies have gone beyond others to prevent misdiagnosis and treatment delays. As many women entrepreneurs and investors step into creating women-inclusive healthcare, the upcoming FemTech trends and opportunities are anticipated to thrive and meet the unmet needs of age-old women’s problems.

There are many more fierce women founders and leaders out there that are defining the future of the startups’ environment. Here is a list of top London startups led by female founders.

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