Top 10 High-Growth Femtech Companies UK | 2023
Lily Ruaah, 12 October 2023
In 2021, the global femtech market held a value of approximately $51b. Projections indicated that by 2030, this market is expected to double, reaching an estimated worth of $103b.
The rapid growth of the femtech market is driven by innovative technologies and increased awareness about women’s health, paving the way for groundbreaking advancements in healthcare tailored specifically to women’s needs.
We used a unique methodology to select our top ten early-stage, high-growth femtech companies.
We’ve ranked early-stage (seed or venture) private femtech companies on the amount of equity raised since the beginning of the year (1 January 2023). These businesses are all headquartered in the UK and have hit at least one of our high-growth tracking signals.
What is femtech?
Femtech, short for female technology, refers to a category of technology-driven products, services, and software specifically designed to address women’s health and wellness needs.
These technologies encompass a wide range of applications, including reproductive health monitoring, fertility solutions, menstrual tracking apps, pregnancy and breastfeeding care, sexual wellness products, and general healthcare tools tailored to women’s unique physiological and reproductive needs.
This transformative field encompasses a diverse range of digital health tools, wearables, apps, and medical devices designed specifically to address women’s unique health needs.Femtech covers a wide range of products and services and it looks like the market is only going to expand.
While femtech is an important area for investment and development, the term “femtech” has come up against criticism for being problematic. One reason for this is that it can be exclusionary towards trans-men and those that are non-binary. Find out more on the controversy of femtech, in our article: Femtech Companies Closing the Gender Health Gap.
Why are femtech companies important?
Women’s healthcare has long suffered neglect—whether that’s being misdiagnosed, not listened to or the lack of research done into women’s health issues. The issue came under scrutiny in 2022 when the government created the first Women’s Health Strategy for England. Steve Barclay, Health and Social Care Secretary came forward, saying, “It is not right that 51% of our population are disadvantaged in accessing the care they need, simply because of their sex”.
However, there are still those that would argue this is hearsay, and that women and men receive the same treatment—or even fare better as there’s evidence that women live longer than men. But let’s take a look at a real world example.
Cancer stands as a significant cause of death for women, ranking among the top three reasons for premature mortality in nearly every country worldwide. However, a recent report in the Lancet highlights that gender inequality and discrimination are limiting women’s chances to mitigate cancer risks—and harming their ability to receive timely diagnoses and high-quality medical care. The report states that up to 800,000 women could be dying each year due to inefficient care.
In many ways femtech is leading the way to create better equality between men and women—technologies can be used to ease the challenges a woman faces in her day-to-day.
Although the majority of femtech products and services are aimed at improving women’s health, there are others that focus more on creating equal opportunities for men and women. For example, Peequal’s gender equalising toilet facilities, which allow everyone to use urinals rather than standing in long queues to use a bathroom or festival portaloo.
Tech is always pushing us forward, and femtech is no different. Apps like Rebel Girls and Elpha have revolutionised the way women think about their place in society, their career, their family, their sexuality, health and much more—by connecting women and letting them share their stories and experiences. Progression wouldn’t be possible without conversation.
For example, in recent years, women’s health has become more of a conversation and not just at home but in the workplace as well—and mostly recently, employers have been looking at how they can support their employees with the menopause. With more and more employers offering resources and support for their employees going through menopause, there’s more of a demand for company’s like Adora who specialise in dealing with menopause and perimenopause in the workplace.
Conversations like these can lead to further progression for women, particularly in the workplace but also in their personal lives. It’s important that we continue to have these open discussions in society to ensure women are being heard, and given the same opportunities as men.
Why are people starting femtech companies?
Femtech takes a stand against poor healthcare for women—giving women the access to apps, platforms and other resources to look after and monitor their own health. But it’s also a great opportunity financially, with women representing 49.58% of the world population.
It can be an attractive company for employees as well. Femtech companies often push the boundaries of innovation drawing aspiring young talent that want to work in new tech.
How has femtech grown globally in the last ten years?
Femtech is relatively new—in fact it’s widely reported that the term was only coined in 2016 by entrepreneur, Ida Tin. In 2012, Tin co-founded Clue, a menstrual tracking app that now has 11m monthly subscribers. Her journey with Clue opened up the question, “why isn’t there more technology for women?” and this is when she started looking specifically at femtech. Since 2012, the global VC investments in femtech has risen from $107m to $1.1b.
As we said before, the global femtech market is expected to double by 2023. This growth is anticipated to occur at a steady pace, with a compound annual growth rate of 8.1% from 2022 to 2030.
Femtech in the UK
Why is funding needed in femtech?
Funding plays a pivotal role in driving the research and development necessary for femtech to exist. When creating technology, particularly something that deals with health and wellbeing, resources are essential for meeting stringent healthcare standards and guidelines—and ensuring that strict regulations are being followed.
Similarly, funding is needed to support the extensive clinical trials necessary to provide the valuable data used for femtech solutions.
Financial support is necessary for robust marketing campaigns and educational initiatives, raising awareness about these technologies among both the public and healthcare professionals. As femtech products often handle sensitive data, funding is crucial for implementing stringent data security measures and ensuring compliance with privacy regulations, safeguarding user information.
As we know at Beauhurst, funding fuels innovation. It enables femtech companies and startups to stay competitive, explore new features, and meet evolving market demands. Ultimately contributing significantly to the improvement of women’s health and overall well-being.
Who is investing in femtech and femtech startups?
Fundraisings for femtech have been growing over the past decade, reaching an all time high in Q2 2023 with six fundraisings among our top ten, totalling £7.54m.
Octopus Ventures managed by the Octopus Group has been a large part of that, investing £5.88m into Femtech products or services—making them the largest investor in our top ten femtech companies. LocalGlobe, managed by Phoenix Court Group, has also invested £4.2m.
But there are also investors that focus particularly on businesses led by women for women.
Angel Academe and Alma Angels focus exclusively on businesses led by women, particularly in the healthcare sector. Angel Academe has invested £875k in the active femtech companies we looked at.
Which sectors does femtech cover?
The top 10 early-stage, high-growth femtech companies of 2023
We’ve ordered our companies from 10 to one.
Total amount raised: £475k
Location: Bristol, UK
Peequal could be seen as an outlier among our top ten. Established in Bristol, they’ve brought together technology and design to create urinals for women. The idea was that often men have easier, quicker access to toilets due to urinals where women are left in queues. Now Peequal has set up their gender equalising facilities at countless festivals and events including Green Man, Shambala and Wilderness Festival.
Peequal is an academic spinout from the University of Bristol. Since its inception it has gained two equity fundraisings, one in 2022 and the other just earlier this year in March, for £225k. Its pre-money valuation has risen from £1.31m in 2022 to £3.6m in 2023.
Total amount raised: £644k
Location: London, UK
Amilis specialises in egg freezing—it’s a free platform that allows women to connect to clinics, speak to others and find out more on how to freeze their eggs. The company also offers personalised guides to help people through their egg freezing journey.
Since their inception in 2022, Amilis has secured one equity fundraising for £644k.
Total amount raised: £875k
Location: Cambridge, UK
Adora is a platform created for workplaces to support their employees going through menopause or perimenopause. The platform provides access to trusted health experts and a digital companion to ensure that every woman is guided and supported through their unique menopause journey.
Adora secured one fundraising earlier this year (July 2023) for £875k. The company has also attended the Start Codon accelerator.
Total amount raised: £1.22m
Location: London, UK
Unfabled offers many different products that all focus on women’s wellbeing. It offers custom care plans through their website, as well as products such as specialised wearable hot waters for cramps, and CBD tampons.
Unfabled has attended three accelerator programs, FemTech Lab from 2021 to 2022, Re/Wire Health Studio by GlaxoSmithKline in 2022, and most recently, the Morgan Stanley Inclusive Ventures Lab (2023-2024). Since their establishment in 2021, it’s secured two fundraisings and one grant for £50k.
Total amount raised: £2.98m
Location: London, UK
Béa Fertility provides a fertility treatment kit inspired by a 1970s design. The design helps women with reproductive issues or to make conception easier without going to a clinic.
The company has secured two fundraisings and three grants—the grants totalling £629k. Béa Fertility attended the Mayor’s International Business Programme in 2022-2023. The company’s pre-money valuation has risen from £2.25m in 2021 to £11.6m in 2023.
Total amount raised: £2.99m
Location: Cambridge, UK
Albatus Therapeutics is looking to enhance outcomes and improve the quality of life for patients dealing with various clinical conditions by applying their next-generation soft tissue radiofrequency ablation (RFA) technology—the technology, better known as BETA, is an enhanced form of tissue ablation whereby abnormal tissues can be destroyed in situ, as an alternative to surgery.
Established in 2015, the company marked its inception as the first spin-out from the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, where the groundbreaking BETA technology was originally conceived. Since then the company has secured nine fundraisings and three grants—the grants totalling £1.07m.
Total amount raised: £6.32m
Location: London, UK
Hertility, also known as Hertility Health, offers a state-of-the-art, at-home hormone and fertility test. It gives women access to everything they need to understand their reproductive health.
Hertility made two high-growth lists. In 2021, it featured in the Startups 100—and then in 2022, it featured in the BusinessCloud HealthTech 50. It also took part in three accelerators: The Hatchery, P4 Precision Medicine and M:Tech. Hertility has secured three fundraisings, the most recent in May 2023 for £1.99m.
Total amount raised: £6.77m
Location: Cambridge, UK
Tuune helps doctors provide personalised hormonal health care plans for their patients. Tuune’s state-of-the-art algorithm is founded on insights gathered from thousands of high-quality scientific and clinical sources. This enables users to swiftly and precisely diagnose hormonal and reproductive issues.
Tuune has attended six accelerators including the Women’s Founders Residency and KQ Labs. It received two grants totalling £659k and secured five rounds of fundraising. The company also trades under the name Pexxi.
Total amount raised: £9.12m
Location: South East, UK
Verso Biosense is paving the way for a new future in women’s health. Through years of research Verso Biosense created a small device called IRIS. Once implanted into the uterus, in the same way a IUD would be, the device offers full understanding of uterine health—giving the success of pregnancy through IVF the best chances.
Verso Biosense is an academic spinout from the University of Southampton. It has secured six fundraisings, the most recent of which was in June 2023 for £4.69m.
Total amount raised: £11.5m
Location: London, UK
Viramal is dedicated to research and development aimed at creating a unique assortment of transdermal and trans-vaginal technologies.
Women often grapple with disorders for which effective treatments are either scarce or the existing therapies fall short in providing adequate relief such as Endometriosis and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). Viramal’s focus is on developing innovative solutions to bridge these gaps and enhance the overall well-being of women.
Since 2014, Viramal’s pre-money valuation has risen from £3.37m to £62.4m (February 2023)—with 11 fundraisings secured. Its most recent equity fundraiser at the beginning of 2023 was for £19.7k.
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