Amit Somani, Managing Partner, Prime Venture Partners @amitsomani
It has been a week since the announcement of our funding in LoveCycles. We launched it in Hindi on 8th March on International Women’s Day and the response from the media and more importantly women all over the world has been overwhelming. My colleague, Sanjay, has summed the launch very well in his blog on Medium. We are delighted to have made the decision of investing in a promising product and an awesome entrepreneur.
Through this blog, we want to highlight some of the reasons why we chose to partner with LoveCycles, particularly with John.
Women’s health is a vastly neglected issue in India and also in many parts of the world. Women have been going through their periods since the beginning of time. It is an oft taboo subject but it is central to all aspects of not just reproductive health but overall women’s health. LoveCycles is a mobile-only app that makes it drop dead easy for women to manage this. Women can track their cycles easily, record and manage their symptoms and in fact, manage their health better – whether it is for conception, contraception or just getting through their monthly cycle .
With Hindi on board, LoveCycles is now available in 13 languages and has been downloaded by over 6M users. Women from across the world from countries like Russia, Mexico, Spain, Portugal, South Korea and dozens of other countries have been using this to manage their cycles for couple of years. It is our belief that one can use smartphones, deep technology and data science to help solve a problem that impacts 100’s of millions of women in India and indeed all around the world.
India now has almost 300 million overall smartphone users in India and almost 200M+ monthly active users. In addition to smartphones being always on and being a convenient tracking device, they are also very private devices. We believe Indian women are ready to use an app like this to improve their lives. Further, most of the mobile user growth in India is happening outside of English as the primary language of communication and hence we are delighted that LoveCycles is now available in Hindi and will soon be available in many other Indian languages.
The overall ratio of General Practitioner (GP) doctors in India to patients is quite low – a total of around 650,000; it is even more dire with fewer than 70,000 gynecologists and obstetricians across the country. This is worse yet in Tier 3, Tier 4 cities and in rural India. Clearly, one way out of this is use technology in a big way to help provide physician access for women and help make it easier to help the OBGYNs as well.
While it can help solve a pain point immediately, the real value of this app is in the the fact that more women use this app, the better it gets at predicting their personal health. To date, LoveCycles has processed almost 100M data points to build its predictive models for individuals. In addition, machine learning on the aggregated and anonymised data will help not just women personally but improving the predictability and understanding of reproductive health for all women. It should also help the medical community to solve harder problems since there has been little data available at scale.
Last but not the least, John Paul is a stellar entrepreneur who has bootstrapped his way to building a fantastic product with terrific, global reach with zero marketing. It is timely that the Federation of Obstetric and Gynecological society of India’s 2016 mantra is “Prevent the Preventable” and cites Hippocrates’ famous quote; “The greatest medicine of all is teaching people how to not need it”.
We’re very bullish that the Plackal team will make a big dent in this problem!
If you want to join the journey, please reach out to Plackal – they are hiring across all levels in Engineering, Product Management and Marketing.
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