Period-tracking app gets $7 million to create platform for women’s health – TechCrunch

ByLance T. Lee

Oct 9, 2015

Berlin-based Clue, which creates a period tracker app designed to allow women to monitor their monthly cycles and help predict their fertile window, closed a $7m Series A round, with investment from Union New York’s Square Ventures and the London-based Series A Mosaic Ventures fund. The new round brings Clue’s total raised to date to $10 million.

Clue launched its app in 2013 and claims it now has over two million active users on Android and iOS in over 180 countries. It is currently available in 10 languages.

In addition to tracking periods, Clue users can also choose to keep tabs on other hormonal changes that occur during their monthly cycle, such as low or high libido or PMT-related symptoms such as low energy levels or insomnia. The app also lets users log when they’ve had sex – useful data to correlate with your fertility window if you’re trying to get pregnant.

While there are plenty of period-tracking apps on the market, co-founder Ida Tin says Clue has a bigger goal than most — and speaks in terms of building a “platform for health.” women”.

There are a lot of investors who will say it’s interesting, but they don’t write the check…

“What we want to do is basically bring this whole amazing field of women’s health into the age of data,” she told TechCrunch. “To see how we can integrate all kinds of data streams from various sensors etc., bring it all together and give women a really powerful way to understand what’s going on in their bodies.”

In a blog post announcing the new funding, Clue says it will use the new funding to fuel growth by expanding its feature set, hiring more staff and expanding into new markets.

Carrying out Clue’s plans, Tin added: “The main thing we want to work on is just to dig deeper into the insights women can get from the data. So we’re getting even better at working with the data we have to make more accurate predictions. And also make notifications more advanced and contextual.

The accuracy of Clue’s predictions will vary depending on the user’s cycle. Thus, women with very regular monthly cycles are likely to get more accurate fertility predictions than those with irregular cycles. Giving users an idea of ​​how accurate the app’s forecasts are for their particular cycle is also on the roadmap, Tin says.

“Those are some of the things that we can now start exploring now because we have a really big data set, and we can also start doing our own clinical research there,” she says. “For example, the app will be able to say that it looks like your cycle seems to fall into this particular pattern – so for this particular pattern, these and these things and these things might be relevant to track – or your accuracy will be such or such because you fall into that category, so we can say for you specifically that your accuracy is probably in that range.

Clue has also been approached by several universities interested in working with his data on studies of women’s reproductive health issues. Tin says he’s working with several at this point, including Stanford, Columbia in New York, the University of Utah and the University of Washington. (During the onboarding process, Clue users are also asked if they would like to be contacted to participate in specific research studies.) The research opportunities are clear.

“Most women still don’t really know what’s going on with their reproductive health and it’s a huge opportunity because it’s an area where really big life decisions are made, and there’s a lot of emotion around it. of that, and it impacts our health in many, many ways and it impacts our daily life in many ways, and also our relationships, so it’s not a ‘nice to have’ it’s kind of a ‘necessary’ area. And no player has really been able to solve that problem in a really satisfying way. And that’s what we’re trying to do,” adds Tin.

“One thing we are already looking at is bleeding patterns related to IUDs [intrauterine contraceptive devices]. And then there are things people are interested in – like if you bleed with other women in the same cycles, or if you’re trying to get pregnant. So these “lifestyle” type questions, which I think we can do real science on. But that’s just kind of a “light ending” – it’s all the way from that stuff to more medical stuff. [questions like] do people with heavy PMS also have heavy bleeding, for example? What kind of correlations do we find?

How easy was it to raise funds with a business case to build a health-focused platform that potentially benefits the lives of approximately 50% of humans on the planet? “No, it wasn’t easy,” Tin said. “I think this area of ​​women’s health and reproductive health is exploding, and I think we’re going to see so many cool products and services in this area, and they’re going to be funded, but I still think it could be accelerated massively .

“I still think there are a lot of investors who will to say that’s interesting, but they don’t do the check…”

In what is perhaps something of a related “penny-drop” moment, Apple corrected a glaring oversight of women’s health in its own Health app this summer by finally adding period tracking.

“We need more female partners of course,” adds Tin, on Investment Point, after referring to the gender imbalance in venture capital firms that fuel the tech industry.

As for markets, Tin says Clue’s main focus at this point remains Europe and the US (currently its biggest market), with LatAm and Japan also “pretty interesting” at this point. Stadium. He is also interested in India to see if there is an opportunity to do something from a “more education/global good” perspective, she adds.

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