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Women’s health start-up launches perimenopause hormone kit

Oova aims to give women and their physicians more insights into their perimenopause journey

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Oova founder and CEO Amy Divaraniya

The US women’s health start-up Oova has launched an at-home hormone kit to support women during perimenopause.

The kit, which tests multi-hormone biomarkers including oestrogen (E3G), comes with an app that tracks women’s data in real time.

Unlike other options on the market, which rely on blood or FSH-only urine tests that only capture a moment in time, Oova says its users are able to measure their hormone fluctuations across a 15-day period throughout a single cycle and their progress month-over-month. This, the company argues, could give women and their physicians insights into their perimenopause journey.

“There are significant gaps in hormone health research, especially as it relates to perimenopause,” says Amy Divaraniya, founder and CEO of Oova.

“We know doctors and patients alike are missing methods to pinpoint where someone is in their journey and identify how symptoms correspond to hormone changes, which often leaves women navigating this life phase in the dark. With the perimenopause hormone kit, women can better understand their bodies, while tracking data that empowers them to make informed decisions with their physicians.”

The Oova test strips are scanned into an app which utilises AI and machine learning to interpret the scan into results. Over time, the company claims its predictive algorithms begin to learn the nuances of every woman’s hormone profile to help her better manage her health.

Insights include measuring perimenopausal hormone activity, tracking physical symptoms, indicating fertility and confirming ovulation for those trying to conceive during perimenopause. It also helps users monitor their hormone patterns when starting hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

“Oova’s test serves as a significant leap forward in healthcare,” says Dr Beck Hoehn, founder of the California-based alternative healthcare practice Mighty River Wellness and advisor to Oova.

“In this stage of women’s health that has traditionally been passed over, Oova’s perimenopause kit equips both the patient and clinician with real-time, accurate insight needed to navigate the complexities with confidence and clarity.”

The launch comes weeks after Oova announced a US$10.3m funding round, led by funding from Spero Ventures, for a new subscription model.

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Menopause start-up raises US$3.3m to expand digital health platform

The funding will be used to expand Elektra’s care delivery platform across payers, self-insured employers and new markets

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Elektra Health Board of Directors | From left to right: Craig Bell (UPMC), Kathryn Heffernan (UPMC), Dr Nora Lansen (Elektra Chief Medical Officer, non-board member), Jannine Versi (Elektra co-founder), Dr Monica Jain (Wavemaker 360), Alessandra Henderson (Elektra co-founder), Katelin Cruise (Seven Seven Six), Vic Lanio (Flare Capital Partners)

The US menopause start-up Elektra Health has raised US$3.3m in new financing to expand its digital health platform.

Elektra Health, a telemedicine platform offering education and one-to-one support, aims to help women understand and manage their menopause symptoms.

Today, 50 million women are currently navigating menopause in the US. However, around 20 per cent of OB/GYN residency programmes offer menopause training, resulting in a care gap.

Research underscores the connection between menopause and the risk and prevalence of chronic conditions such as heart disease, hypertension and osteoporosis, among others.

Elektra’s Actuarial Study (2023) revealed that women diagnosed with menopause incur significantly increased healthcare spend (45 per cent), and often suffer poorer outcomes.

The company’s menopause care model aims to combine telemedicine care with one-to-one support from health experts to help women better navigate menopause.

“Elektra Health’s three core pillars – education, care, and community – lay the foundation for women to not only understand menopause, but to also take actionable steps to optimise their long-term health and wellness,” said Alessandra Henderson, co-founder and CEO of Elektra Health.

The funding round, led by UPMC Enterprises with participation from Wavemaker 360 and existing investors Flare Capital Partners and Seven Seven Six Fund, brings the total amount of equity finance raised to US$7.6m.

The capital will be used to expand Elektra’s care delivery platform across payers, self-insured employers and new markets.

Jannine Versi, co-founder and COO at Elektra Health, said: “We’re thrilled to have UPMC joining as lead investor for this round.

“They are exemplary in their dedication to holistic care for women across the lifespan, including menopause and the intersecting health needs of an aging population that has been wildly underserved to date.”

Kathryn Heffernan, senior director of strategic product management at UPMC Enterprises, added: “UPMC is interested in investing in solutions that focus on empowering women and Elektra proved to have all the elements UPMC values in this space: evidence-based education and care that prioritises women’s health needs and drives outcomes.

“The goal of the Elektra platform is to fill a gap and provide innovative opportunities to strengthen the doctor-patient relationship as women move through the menopause transition.”

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Tech4Eva launches its fourth edition and call for application

Tech4Eva is searching for entrepreneurs ready to address the unmet health needs of women worldwide

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Tech4Eva, a pioneering accelerator programme dedicated to the femtech sector, is opening its call for applications, inviting femtech start-ups to join its mission to improve women’s health.

The programme is searching for entrepreneurs ready to address the unmet health needs of women worldwide, promising to help entrepreneurs to take their start-ups to the next level.

What is Tech4Eva?

Tech4Eva, is a joint programme between EPFL Innovation Park and Groupe Mutuel for companies developing innovative technology solutions to improve women’s health globally.

What is Tech4Eva looking for? 
Why join?

Applying to the Tech4Eva accelerator programme is a pivotal step for any femtech start-up looking to elevate its impact and reach in the women’s health sector.

Here is an overview of the benefits the programme offers:

  • Strategic refinement: Sharpen your business model and go-to-market strategy with expert guidance, positioning your start-up for sustainable growth and success.
  • Enhanced visibility: Participate in roadshows to showcase your innovative solutions, broadening your exposure to key stakeholders in the Tech4Eva femtech ecosystem.
  • Direct connections: Gain invaluable access to a network of investors and potential customers.
  • Personalised coaching: Receive targeted technical and business coaching tailored to your start-up’s unique challenges.
  • Peer learning: Benefit from Peer2Peer sessions that foster exchange of insights and experiences with fellow founders.
  • Community engagement: Become an integral part of a global femtech community, connecting with like-minded innovators committed to transforming women’s health.
The time is now

This is more than a call for applications, it’s a call to action. The Tech4Eva accelerator programme offers more than growth – it offers a chance to be part of a movement set to redefine the future of women’s health.

If your start-up is ready to take the next step, your time is now. Apply here to join the Tech4Eva programme now.

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Investors launch female-focused angel network in the north of England

The Leeds-based group aims to build a diverse investment community for women entrepreneurs in the north of England

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Two UK-based businesswomen have launched an angel investment network to back women-led start-ups in the north of England.

Co-founded by Jordan Dargue and Helen Oldham, Lifted Ventures was launched based on research showing that female-led businesses generate on average double the revenue for each pound invested, despite receiving minimal funding.

Funding has been identified as a top barrier for women in tech and business, with the Alison Rose Review revealing that less than one per cent of all venture funding goes to all-female-founded start-ups.

Dargue and Oldham, who led the NorthInvest angel network and co-founded Fund Her North and Women Angels of the North, said they came together to this new venture to build on their work in closing the early-stage gender and ethnic funding gap in the UK.

The Leeds-based group aims to build a diverse investment community for women entrepreneurs in the north of England, planning to create networks for angels and supply its capital to women-led startups.

“Too often the conversation focuses on disparity, gender funding gaps, barriers and challenges. Lifted Ventures is focusing on opportunity,” said Oldham, co-founder of Lifted Ventures and board member of the UK Business Angels Association, told UKTN.

“One of our main aims is to educate and inform investors on the proven business benefits and greater economic returns which result from supporting female-founded businesses.”

Lifted’s angel networks, Oldham said, would include education programmes to support new and experienced investors who want to gain a better understanding of how to back female-led businesses.

“We understand that female-led businesses and women angels need tailored pathways to ensure that they’re successful,” explained Jordan, co-founder of Lifted Ventures.

“The education programmes we’re developing aim to provide investors and founders alike with the practical resources and knowledge they need to ensure success.”

She aded: “We believe that investment should be accessible to everyone, irrespective of their background, ethnicity, gender, neuro or physical diversity.”

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