Meet 20 companies innovating in menstrual and sexual health and wellbeing; OCON Healthcare Awarded as Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum; WEAR Conference 2022 is back + more
Biweekly newsletter about the latest news and updates on innovation and diversity in wearable tech, health tech, and femtech space.
Happy Monday everyone! 🌞
Per a leaked draft obtained by Politico, the Supreme Court is set to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, a precedent that protects a women’s choice to have an abortion. The move, still yet to go through, would be devastating to the women’s reproductive rights movement and a stunning jolt to healthcare in the United States.
In response to the looming potential shift, the founders of digital health startups spoke up about how the overturn will impact women. For many startups, especially those explicitly focused on women’s health, the future could directly clash with the mission they’ve raised millions and spent years trying to scale: expand access to healthcare across the board.
Read the full story on TechCrunch to find out more.
On a brighter note, women comprised 45% of all new Fortune 500 board appointments in 2021, a new high, while Black directors were 26% of new appointees, a tad lower than 2020 after a surge that year, according to a report released Wednesday morning by executive search and leadership consulting firm Heidrick & Struggles.
A record 43% of all new appointees to these boards were first-time directors — a key driver of diversity. Overall, the percentage of women on boards has slowly risen to 29%, from 19% when Heidrick first published this report in 2015. (There was a big uptick in 2017, as the MeToo movement drew major headlines.)
Keep going, ladies, keep going! 💪🏽
Thank you for tuning in this Monday, happy reading! Marija & Anja 💌
WoW webinars and virtual events 🌎 📆
This week, we are continuing with our FemTech Untapped webinar series, and we will be covering innovations and topics related to menstrual and sexual health and wellbeing.
Join us on May 17th to hear from innovators and experts in the menstrual health space!
Menstrual health is much more than just menstruation. According to UNICEF, it encompasses the broader impacts of the psychological, socio-political and environmental factors that accompany menstruation on mental, physical, and emotional health.
At least 20% of people with PMS are experiencing debilitating symptoms due to chronic conditions such as endometriosis, PCOS, and fibroids. Studies show hormonal contraceptives, very often used to alleviate symptoms of PMS and painful periods, could impact mood and be linked to increased rates of depression and breast cancer. Globally, at least 500 million menstruators lack adequate facilities for menstrual hygiene management according to World Bank.
What we need is a holistic approach to better menstrual health; an approach that will include education, addressing stigmas and taboos; an approach that guarantees every menstruator has access to menstrual hygiene products and teaches them how to better understand their menstrual health; an approach that allows them to learn about different products and solutions so that they can make more informed decisions about their own bodies and their own health.
🤝 Our webinar partner for this session is Elix - the first digital platform to use modern technology to personalize Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) online, by combining time-tested knowledge, medicinal botanicals, and clinical research to empower self-healing and make access to scientifically-backed natural remedies more convenient and available than ever before. Built on the principle that menstrual cycles are a vital sign for our overall health, Elix formulates pure and potent liquid herbal extracts clinically proven to treat specific hormonal imbalances that are the root cause of painful symptoms.
Join us on May 19th to hear from innovators and experts in the sexual health space!
Sexual health is fundamental to the overall health and well-being of individuals, couples and families, and to the social and economic development of communities and countries, as stated by WHO. It is a big business opportunity as well. According to Statista, the size of the sexual wellness market will be 37.2 billion U.S. dollars next year.
In 2022, however, sexual health and wellness are still stigmatized, covered in shame and taboo. Sexual health education, data gap related to female pleasure, and lack of research related to women’s health are some of the main reasons many sexual health and wellness startups exist and build their innovative products around.
🤝 Our webinar partner for this session is The Lovehoney Group - one of the world's leading companies in the sexual wellness industry and a provider of premium intimate products for your love life. Its mission is to promote sexual happiness and empowerment through design innovation, research & development, and great customer service.
We have also featured companies participating at this event along with some other innovative startups in our recent blog post, check it out below! 👇🏽
Follow us on Eventbrite to stay up to date with all our future events and meetups! Link here.
Interested in joining us for one of our future webinars or you would like to discuss partnership and collaboration? Get in touch!
WoW community events, news, and updates 💻🌎📆
🏆 Our member company OCON Healthcare, the female-led company that is re-inventing women’s health, was selected among hundreds of candidates as one of the World Economic Forum’s “Technology Pioneers”. Congratulations, OCON! Read more on our blog here.
📆 From fiber to finished textile, Techtextil North America and Texprocess Americas are known as the largest event for materials, equipment, technology, services, and more for the entire technical textiles, nonwovens, and sewn products textile supply chain. The two events will reunite the industry in Atlanta on May 17 – 19, 2022. Use promo code WOW22 when booking your ticket – this will provide you with 15% off of symposium purchases for either event!
📆 The 2nd World Congress on Women’s Health: Innovations and Inventions (WHII 2022): Addressing Unmet Needs will take place on July 11-12, 2022 in Tel Aviv, Israel. Please click here to view the preliminary program.
📆 Tech4Eva is partnering with INSEAD Healthcare Club for its Annual Healthcare Conference on "Empowering Healthcare through Digital Innovation". Join the joint event online on May 19 to listen to renowned leaders and founders from different sectors including women’s health, oncology, and many others. Register via this link.
📆 The annual WEAR Conference examines the significant breakthroughs and new opportunities made possible through the integration of textiles and technology through wearables. This year, WEAR 2022 is coming to Scottsdale, AZ, and online, June 7-9, 2022. Take a look at the 2022 agenda.
📌 Our WoW members from Lumino have opened a waiting list for their first product - Seren. Seren is an app-based programme accessible via your laptop, smartphone, or tablet. The programme is personalised to your symptoms and is based on clinical evidence. You can join the waiting list here.
📆 Our friends from FemTech Lab are hosting a night of FemTech Innovation and Bubbles! Come and dance with the FemTech Lab Team and Community for a night you won't forget. We’ll be there! Tickets are available here! (+ they are hiring a Head of Marketing)
✍🏽 Kinneir Dufort’s team took place at the Women’s Health Innovation Summit in Basel last month. They took a look back in their blog post - from compelling start-ups to companies driving innovation for women’s healthcare, the event has been a great success! Check it out here.
📆 Jane Reddin, Talent and Platform Director at AlbionVC will speak at the EU-Startups Summit in Barcelona on May 12-13, find out more here.
📌 Earlier this year, our member company Thrive gathered global leaders in femtech for a webinar on how digital innovation can help bridge the gender health gap. See the five key takeaways in their latest blog post here.
🏆 Our member Hannah Samano, founder of Unfabled, has been featured on Forbes’ 30 under 30 list. Congratulations, Hannah!
🏆 Our member Carrie Nixon received the 2022 Telehealth Champion award for “Advancing Access to Virtual Care” at the American Telemedicine Association Annual Leadership Dinner this month. Congratulations, Carrie!
🏆 Our member Melanie Cristol has received FDA approval for her Lorals underwear as a device that can prevent the transmission of STIs!
💼 Our member company Intent is hiring for a number of technical roles.
🔥 Become a WoW member to learn from and connect with our community of entrepreneurs, designers, and technologists, leverage valuable resources, and discover career opportunities!
🧑🏫 Join our LinkedIn femtech group with 1,400+ members where we discuss all things women’s health, femtech innovation, and investment.
📆 Check out our events page.
📧 Get in touch if you’d like to become our partner and promote your company in this newsletter!
📌 If you are a female founder, designer, or technologist, we would love to feature you on our WoW women blog!
Thanks for reading this newsletter, if you wish to send us feedback or have a question, email us, we would love to hear from you! 🥰