Frost & Sullivan’s recent analysis, “Femtech: Digital Revolution in Women’s Health”, finds that female technology (Femtech) is on the cusp of explosive growth. Spurred by almost $1 billion in funding over the last three years and a positive regulatory environment, Femtech is emerging as the next big disruptor in the global healthcare market.
Femtech refers to software, diagnostics, products, and services that harness technology to improve women’s health. Using a variety of digital health applications and technology that provide end-to-end solutions for key women’s health issues, Femtech applications target reproductive, maternal and general women’s health and wellness, including mental health issues, elderly care, and chronic and communicable diseases. Self-management and continued engagement is core to managing women’s health issues, and Femtech has the power to add value across the care continuum.
“Going forward, it will be critical for medical device, clinical diagnostic, and women’s health companies to provide additional value to their customers, which necessitates taking ownership of the value chain. With this objective, they may have to either consider the acquisition of Femtech applications, partnering with specialised Femtech companies or build their own portfolios,” noted Shruthi Parakkal, Transformational Health Senior Consultant at Frost & Sullivan. “The end goal is to formulate a marketing strategy exclusively for Femtech, and companies that recognise this need early on will have the first mover advantage.”
But while the benefits of Femtech are widely recognised, the market is still at a nascent stage and its remarkable growth potential remains unfulfilled, despite having a target customer base of 50% of the global population. This is partially linked to poor visibility and lack of communication about Femtech applications to key decision-makers, including women users and healthcare professionals. Persistent cultural and social barriers, coupled with limited access to healthcare products and services and overall affordability, represent additional pain points for women.
However, the increasingly influential role of women across the healthcare continuum as consumers, decision-makers, healthcare professionals and caregivers, is pushing healthcare companies to actively develop specialised, interactive digital applications for women’s health.
Further trends that will drive growth in the Femtech market include:
- Understanding the right set of applications that can support patients and healthcare professionals across the care continuum;
- Identifying partnership opportunities for scalable business models that can expand the potential target customer base;
- Developing differentiated digital applications that specifically target women’s health and wellness;
- Formulating exclusive marketing strategies for Femtech, while maximising multi-channel interaction; and
- Obtaining insights into the drivers and motivating factors that increase usage, enhance patient perception, and encourage better engagement.
“With the rise of digital convergence, the overlap between women’s health and digital health is increasing, and it is imperative for companies to cater to unmet needs in the industry to capitalise on this strategic sweet spot,” said Paljit Sohal, Transformational Health Principal Consultant at Frost & Sullivan. “Femtech, ultimately, needs to be viewed as part of a long-term strategy, rather than a short-term solution.”