This Fem-Tech innovator enabled one-time cost for tracking fertile days
Last updated:03 Sep 2021
The project me.mum, a portable device for monitoring fertile days, was first presented to the public at the Bug magazine business idea competition Idea Knockout in September 2017. There, me.mum won second place, and after that, they visited Consumer Electronics CES in Las Vegas.
Today, one time and expensive methods such as urine tests or inaccurate menstrual calendars are used to determine fertile days. me.mum simply detects and analyses the level of luteinising hormone from one drop of saliva, and with the help of machine learning technology, predicts fertile days in three steps. A drop of saliva is placed on the device, connected to a smartphone, and the app predicts the best time to conceive.
The me.mum is a project launched by Maja Bujas, and we thought it would be a great thing to support her work and ask her a few questions.
What encouraged you to start this project?
My personal experience. When my husband and I decided to have a baby, not everything was as we expected. After two years of trying to conceive, I started using a saliva-based method of determining ovulation and was finally able to get pregnant. It was then that I decided to make this method more approachable and easier to use, to modernise it by combining it with the mobile application. And that was the start of me.mum.
What type of resources did you need?
In the beginning, we financed ourselves, from our other business ventures. But when we reached the stage of production, we needed financial help, so we applied and got funding from the EU funds, for which we are grateful.
In a few interviews, you noted how difficult it was to complete and perfect this project, what was the most challenging and where were your roadblocks?
We were faced with the same challenges most start-ups are faced with. You start from the beginning, knowing very little, but with every step you take, you are learning more and more. It wasn’t always easy, but when the results are palpable and your customers are satisfied with your product, you are motivated to do better and accomplish more.
Femtech is dedicated to innovations in women’s health, and the founder revealed how challenges women face today are completely under-researched. Why do you think that’s the case?
When it comes to women’s health and women’s bodies, for example, it is a known fact women of reproductive age in the USA were excluded from many clinical trials and health research in the past. Whatever the reasoning for that discrimination, the fact remains that some women-specific health problems were neglected, but hopefully, things are changing for the better.
Also, women scientists, just like women entrepreneurs are, even today, faced with gender stereotypes and sexism in their line of business, and for those of us who are mothers and wives – it’s not always easy to balance your private life with work.
But one thing I’ve learned doing what I do is that anything is possible if you have the right kind of support and encouragement from your family and within your environment.
Did you manage to grow your team, and what needs to happen for you to have the resources that you need to grow into new markets?
Our team is constantly growing and changing depending on the needs of the market and our own budget. Right now, we are working on establishing partnerships with companies akin to our own, that could provide us with resources we don’t have. I sincerely hope that, due to our business strategy and our new partnerships, we’ll reach the EU market by the end of this year.
In which countries is me.mum available?
Our first destination is the EU countries. Of course, we want to reach other regions of the world, but this depends on the specific permits, the requirements of which are different in different parts of the world.