Menstrual cups (sometimes known as “moon cups”) have been around since the 1930s, and it’s been a bloody long period since we’ve seen much innovation in that category. Emm just closed a $1 million round of funding to add some smarts. The company adds an applicator and an app tracking feature to help keep an eye on things.
We spoke with the company’s founder to learn more about where she sees the market going in the near future.
“What drives me is the firm belief that information about your body can make a life-altering difference to your health outcomes. That’s why what we’re doing at Emm is important — we’re addressing health with our sensing platform and we’re also addressing quality of life with product performance. And that combination of innovation in technology with design is magic,” says Emm founder & CEO Jenny Button in an interview with TechCrunch. “My vision for the next generation of consumer health technology makes me the perfect person to run Emm, and it means that my team (who help bring that vision to life) and I are working to deliver meaningful impact in what’s one of the most important sectors in the world.”
The £891,000 round ($1.1 million) came from a mix of angel groups and the government org Innovate UK. The goal of the round is to hire the core team, and work toward broader market validation. The company is currently in a stage of beta testing, and is planning a product launch next year. The company has been working on developing and testing its product for the past two years.
Emm isn’t the first smart menstrual cup on the market. Most notably, Looncup took a stab at the market with a Kickstarter project back in 2015, which raised $160,000 or so, and was scheduled to ship its products in 2016. From the backer comments, it appears that the product never shipped, and the last update from the Looncup team was that the company received FDA approval in 2019. Looncup did not reply to a request for a comment for this article.
“Our ultimate goal is to progress individual and collective health through new and unique bio-data. And if it all goes to plan, consumers will have access to tools that don’t currently exist that will provide unique insight into how their body is working and their state of health,” explains Button. “This means they’ll be able to manage their healthcare better thanks to this next generation of wearable technology.”
Like many businesses, the company had a number of wobbles over the past couple of years, largely due to supply chain disruptions.
“My favorite thing about working on Emm is working with a brilliant team of designers, researchers, engineers and scientists who are equally passionate and committed to improving health outcomes,” Button says.