Tech-Savvy Women

The Femtech Revolution

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The market for femtech services is growing, with the amount of venture capital raised by these firms crossing the billion-dollar threshold.

  • Facts


    • Femtech firms provide apps and products specifically catering to female health and wellness needs.
    • Forty-five startups in the industry have already received generous funding from institutional investors.
    • The biggest hurdle for femtech entrepreneurs is that most investors and engineers are male and sometimes uncomfortable talking about female health.
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Bay Area startups developing the high-tech way to make a baby
Julie Askland, right, tries on an Ava fertility-tracking device, while talking with co-founder Lea von Bidder at the company's San Francisco office. Source: picture alliance / newscom

Wearable technology tends to count the steps walked, monitor the heart rate or measure the quality of sleep – everything that men want from their gadgets.

Female needs, however, are often ignored by this technology, a fact that a new group of female entrepreneurs is taking advantage of.

One such entrepreneur is Lea von Bidder, whose company Ava produces a wristband that monitors women’s monthly cycle. The tracker collects data on sleep, breathing and blood flow, and is supposed to help women get pregnant more easily by telling them when they experience their most fertile days each month.

The idea was born out of the real-life problems many women experience. “My co-founder and his girlfriend were trying to get pregnant,” Ms. von Bidder said. “Even under the best of circumstances, chances of conception in any month are only 25 percent,” she added. To optimize that process, Ms. von Bidder and three co-founders developed the Ava wristband, which sells for €249 ($263).

Since 2014 more than $1.1 billion of venture capital has gone to tech companies that cater to female health and wellness needs, according to CB Insights, a service trying to predict technology trends. The list of 45 well-financed startups in the so-called femtech industry is likely to grow.

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