Berlin-based Inne has raised $10 million in what the company is referring to as an extension of a 2019 Series A round. The health tech startup produces a saliva biosensor mini-lab that can be used by women to track progesterone levels within their bodies.
Already in use by thousands of customers across Europe, Inne’s new $10 million raise will specifically aid the company to expand the platform and enter the US market through an exclusive partnership with Phenology. To date, Inne has raised a total of $18.8 million.
Progesterone. On the list of chemicals floating around in your body, it’s a pretty important one. The one we’re perhaps most familiar with is progesterone’s role in the sex hormone involved in the menstrual cycle, and pregnancy cycle of mammals.
However, progesterone doesn't stop there, as it also plays a crucial role in the production of other steroids, least of which is the corticosteroid, a duality steroid (gluco or mineralo) which is involved in the actions of stress response, immune response, regulation of inflammation, carbohydrate metabolism, protein catabolism, blood electrolyte levels, and behavior.
Becoming a certified medical device in 2019, Inne’s mini lab has been proven to be as accurate as if users in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and the UK had shipped a sample off to a full-blown dedicated lab, and gleaned a more precise picture of their menstrual cycle.
According to the startup, some users have used the service to help them get pregnant, while others have done just the opposite. To this end, Inne is currently in the process of achieving certification as a contraceptive product following the results of ongoing clinical studies.
In addition to extending its services to the tracking of perimenopause, the new capital will be used to roll out stress tracking/analysing features through a dedicated cortisol strip. Cortisol, while good in small/just enough doses, when sustained levels are present in the body, i.e. during times of stress, oestrogen levels can drop, leading to weight gain, night sweats, sleep troubles, and mood swings. In addition to helping manage/understand the aforementioned perimenopause symptoms/biochemical reactions, tracking oestrogen levels can play a crucial role in conceiving.
“Women’s health is consistently one of the most under-funded areas of medical research, with women only officially required to be included in clinical research in the US for the first time in 1993. This means women have less information about what is happening to their bodies and that makes it harder for them to improve their health and lifestyle. This information gap has been a driving force for me in creating inne and I’m thrilled that we are now able to help women learn about their bodies and be proactive in managing their own health and fertility,” commented Inne founder and CEO Eirini Rapti.
Inne’s $10 million Series A extension round was led by DSM Venturing, with Borski Fund, Calm Storm Ventures, and angel investors Taavet Hinrikus (Wise), Dr. Fiona Pathiraja, and Rolf Schroemgens (Trivago) all participating.
“The product is best in class for in-home testing of hormone levels. In a short period of time, inne has been shown to lead the trend of quantified self-solutions for women. We are enthusiastic because of the multiple use cases, from fertility to contraception and perimenopause,” concluded Borski Fund’s Simone Brummelhuis.
Lead image: Zaira Biagini