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What is femtech?

What is femtech? Who coined the term femtech? What barriers have femtech founders traditionally faced and is it changing? Find out in this blog.

The femtech space has had a banner several years and a breakout 2021, with global venture capital surpassing $2 billion for the first time. A variety of market factors contributed to a dip in deal count and total deal value in 2022 and 2023. Both years still top capital raised in any year prior to 2021, and Kindbody’s Series C3 funding round in May 2023—a whopping $191.2 million—was bigger than the biggest single deal value in femtech in 2021—Beauty Pie‘s $138.3 million round.

With the need for more and better health technologies targeting biological and medical issues specific to women, the industry is primed for growth. In this article, we take a closer look at femtech—what it means, its history, growth drivers, trending new companies in the space, and critiques of it.

Definition of femtech

The femtech industry refers to a range of health software and tech-enabled products that cater to female biological needs. As a subcategory of healthtech, this industry vertical attempts to highlight and the historical and systemic exclusion of women’s health needs in the healthcare industry while creating targeted solutions for a range of those needs, including:

  • Menstrual cycle tracking
  • Fertility
  • Pregnancy

PitchBook analysts say that defining femtech is an elusive task—while some view beauty and skincare products as part of the industry, our analysts categorize femtech startups as only those whose products and services address a medical need. PitchBook groups the femtech landscape across four subsegments:

  • General health and wellness
  • Healthcare and diagnostics
  • Reproductive health
  • Pregnancy and family care

Femtech quick stats from the PitchBook Platform






Median post-valuation




Largest deal




Capital invested

*According to PitchBook as of December 5, 2023; data is subject to change frequently

Why have femtech companies traditionally lacked VC support?

The reticence male VCs have shown by under-investing in femtech startups is likely related to and reinforced by cultural taboos around women’s bodies. Menstrual products weren’t allowed to be advertised on American television until 1972, and the US—and other countries—have a long history of failing to embrace menstruation as a reality of life.

Though cultural standards around gender have evolved, some men may still prefer not to discuss topics related to menstruation, UTIs, pregnancy, childbirth, or menopause. And because 95.5% of US VC firms have a majority male population of decision-makers—including 83.9% of all US GPs, according to PitchBook’s 2022 All In report—avoiding these topics has been the norm in boardrooms as well. Thus, a huge market opportunity has been underfunded for years, and the needs of those who could have benefited from these products and services have largely gone unmet.

PitchBook's US VC Female Founders Dashboard

See trends in venture capital funding for female-founded companies in the United States.

Explore the dashboard

History of femtech

Ida Tin, co-founder of a mobile fertility tracking app called Clue, coined the term “femtech” in 2016. She saw male investors struggle to discuss female-focused products, and she sought to create a space for those conversations with the introduction of the term. She also hoped to bring more attention to an industry that had lacked funding opportunities from the jump.

More about entrepreneur Ida Tin

Tin said this about the need to improve discussions regarding women’s health in an interview with Junto Health, in 2017:

“Despite significant advancements, menstrual health is still somewhat considered a ‘niche’ topic. We believe that we need to move away from this notion entirely and open up the conversation around this significant part of people’s lives. There is much to be gained from increased knowledge of a person’s menstrual cycle. Not just for men, but for women also. The menstrual cycle is much more than just a monthly bleed, it is an indicator of overall health, and so becoming better educated not only about menstruation in general, but an individual’s unique cycle, can enable a person to become more in tune with their body and how their cycle affects them.”

In addition to co-founding Clue, Tin also serves as its chairwoman. Prior to that, she co-founded, co-owned and served as the director of Moto Mundo, where she led motorcycle tours around the world. She published a book about that experience in 2009, and “Direktøs” went on to become a best-seller in Denmark. In 2004, She graduated from Aarhaus’ prestigious and creative business school, Kaospilot.

A closer look at Clue

  • Latest deal: $9.04M, equity crowdfunding
  • Latest deal date: April 2023
  • Total raised to date: $73.68M
  • Post-valuation: $80.46M

Founded by Tin in 2013, Clue is a mobile app designed to track the fertility cycle. Based in Berlin, the startup’s platform analyzes information about the period, PMS, and fertile window, gives predictions, and sets calendar reminders with the goal of helping users find patterns in symptoms and better manage their menstrual health. In April 2023, Clue raised $9.04 million via equity crowdfunding. Participants in the round included Union Square Ventures, Balderton Capital, NGP Capital, TeamPact Ventures, and Tomcat Ventures.

New femtech companies to watch


  • HQ: Geneva, Switzerland
  • Leadership: Laura Crain, founder and CEO
  • Founded: 2023

perry. is the developer of a mobile app that connects women going through perimenopause and menopause. The app supports women and creates opportunities to learn, engage, and share their experiences, as well as get advice from experts. The startup joined Techstars in February 2023 as part of their Seattle accelerator program.


  • HQ: San Francisco, CA
  • Leadership: Fifi Kara, co-founder and CEO
  • Founded: 2023

Currently operating in stealth mode, AsterCare builds technologies that improve the way pre- and post-natal care is delivered, managed, and paid for. From care continuity and remote monitoring to clinical guidance, Aster provides all you need from conception to parenthood—with easy access to your provider and care team through a mobile app.


  • HQ: Belfast, Northern Ireland
  • Leadership: Sibley Berty, co-founder and CEO and Claudia Berty, co-founder
  • Founded: 2023

Femity is a female healthcare marketplace that provides women with information on gynecological conditions including PCOS, endometriosis, fibroids, ovarian cysts, and more. It’s also an online community where women can discuss their issues and questions, write reviews of new technologies and treatments, and help others find useful health information in one place.

Who is investing in femtech?

As of December 5, 2023, the most active investors in femtech startups are:

The future of femtech

Whereas femtech startups have traditionally gone unfunded or underfunded, there are some promising shifts afoot.

  • Secular drivers have recently propelled new growth opportunities in femtech, including increased representation of women in the venture capital industry and rising awareness and acceptance of women’s health issues.
  • These advances have contributed to a steady increase in funding for femtech over the past decade. In 2019, the global femtech market generated over $820 million. According to PitchBook, that number will reach $3 billion by the end of 2030.
  • In 2021, several sizable femtech deals occurred in the space—further elevating the visibility of these kinds of startups. Flo raised a $50 million Series B round, while Maven Clinic became the first femtech unicorn following a $110 million Series D round (Maven then went on to raise another $90 million during its Series E round in November 2022).
  • Although the majority of femtech products have traditionally focused on reproductive health, PitchBook analysts believe new approaches to women’s health research will open the door to new products and services—and new investment opportunities.

Still, the research and funding for discovering and marketing new treatments for women remain relatively low. Women make up half the global population but despite the estimated $500 billion in annual medical expenses attributed to them, only 4% of all healthcare research and development is targeted at women’s health issues specifically, according to PitchBook data. So even with a relatively solid growth outlook, our experts believe that femtech remains a significantly underdeveloped area of healthtech.

Critiques on the intersectionality of and need for the term

The term femtech itself has proven to be a bit controversial, according to PitchBook analysts. Many people propose using a different term to avoid alienating nonbinary, trans and other gender-nonconforming people who experience many of these related health concerns. Others suggest that creating a separate category for women’s health within the healthtech vertical alienates women and positions them as “the other” and men as “the norm.” For example, no synonymous term—e.g., “mentech”—exists to designate male-specific health products and services. How these conversations will shift the way we describe and refer to “femtech” startups in the future remains to be seen.

More on femtech and female founders

Do we really need ‘femtech’?
Femtech continues to be plagued by misconceptions—get the full scoop from PitchBook News & Analysis

Who’s investing in femtech?
Read this PitchBook news article about the most active VC investors in femtech blog post

Get to know several female founders of femtech companies
Read our 81 female founders and investors to know blog post

Get to know more players in the femtech startup space
Read our blog post about Female-focused health startups founded by women

Check out trends in VC funding for female-founded companies in the US
Explore PitchBook’s US VC Female Founders Dashboard

See trends in VC funding for European female-founded startups
Explore PitchBook’s European VC Female Founders Dashboard