66% of women internet users look for health information online and women are 75% more likely than men to access digital health solutions. This data explains the rise of “femtech” or the tech enabled women’s health segment globally.
Global femtech market is ~$20 Bn in size, and is expected to grow to ~$50 Bn by 2025.
The interesting part is that women’s health has now moved beyond just maternity to cover the entire journey of women from puberty to menopause. ~$3Bn has been invested in this space globally, largely across companies in the fertility, general health, menstrual health and pregnancy & motherhood segments.
India itself, has seen strong traction in the femtech space with $125 Mn+ invested across deals between 2014 – 18. This investment push is led by the large addressable market India has.
~200 Mn+ women are online in India now, ~50 Mn women are transacting online.
Amongst the 5 crore users of Practo's telemedicine platform from March – May 2020, gynecology was the top category along with GP for consultation. More than 100,000 Indian women search for terms like PCOD and UTI terms online every month. Women only community platforms have built strong traction with millions of MAUs each. There is clearly a growing willingness amongst women to transact online, there is stronger trust in online platforms and communities and also greater awareness of health issues.
In India, women’s health issues are both under diagnosed and under addressed, giving rise to a large latent market. 1 in 5 women have PCOD, 1 in 10 couples in reproductive age have fertility issues (Source: EY report). Of the 2.5 crs would be mothers in India every year, 80% live in nuclear households and need not just physical but emotional support to have a healthy pregnancy. Given both the latent demand the sector has and the ability to organize supply digitally, there has been an explosion in the activity in the femtech space. Most of the businesses in the sector are organized either around products or communities to build the early traction.
In our view, women customers need stronger awareness, trust and convenience to become transactors on a digital platform. Once you get this troika right, we believe LTVs can be very high from these women transactors. Also, there is a need for a more holistic platform because treatments for most women’s health issues like PCOS, fertility, etc. are not linear. Given these two factors, we believe companies which can provide comprehensive, integrated solutions to women - combination of content driven engagement, community and clear monetization via products - are more likely to succeed in the women’s health space.
(with inputs from Jayshree Kanther Patodi and Shivam Jindal)