FemTech reached a 1bn$ in funding between 2015 and 2018, and projections see a raise to $50bn in 2025. FemTech targets women, but instead of pink-coloured products it provides solutions to female health (with a strong focus on fertility). We have quickly ended up in a situation where “male investors talking about periods” is flagged as a success. It is a matter of fact that women are invisible in many treatments and that certain tools haven’t evolved in ages because they are solely for the use of women and uninteresting to male investors and innovators. Bridging the gender gap in health is a priority. Nonetheless, my take is that seeing this a battle of sexes narrows down a huge set of opportunities. I am much in favour of FemTech if that means improving – by diversifying – health tools and data sets, thus improving the quality of care. Or if it means generating a debate about how much health in the tech sphere has been narrowed down to self-tracking. FemTech has a big opportunity to handle the sovereignty around our body in a different way than what has been done so far. To fight the overarching culture of quantification. We have been used to think that quantifying = solving, and it is undeniable this is very important on the research side for prevention. But on the citizen side, quantifying doesn’t say anything about the quality of what we quantify, and whether we are left alone dealing with it. If femtech becomes another mean to exploit some more data and frame femininity within the ultimate goal of pregnancy, investors can save their money.
Featured in futuribile newsletter issue #20 – The Devil wears optimisation