5 TechTruster takeaways from the Women’s Health Investor Summit

The women's health scene is taking off in the Nordics - and many people are dedicated to the cause. Here's our five takeaways from the event:

Women's Health Investor Summit. Image: Charlotte Nørgaard Langer
Women's Health Investor Summit. Image: Charlotte Nørgaard Langer

On March 6th 2024 Angella Invest, EIFO and BioInnovation Institute held the first Women’s Health Investor Summit in the Nordics. The event was sold out after 2 weeks with over 100 participants and more than 70 on a waitlist. The message is clear: Women’s health is in focus, and the stakeholders in the ecosystem are ready to act. 

Image: https://www.angellainvest.com/eventdetaljer-tilmelding/investor-summit-womens-health

An inspiring line up of speakers and panelists at the Women’s Health Investor Summit

Several inspiring speakers including Charlotte Nørgaard Langer, a part of Angella Invest and an expert in the women’s health investment scene; Priya Oberoi, General Partner and Founder of Goddess Gaia Ventures (first and only European Women’s Health VC Fund) and a panel debate moderated by Cathrine Nygaard Christensen, Senior Innovation Manager, Women’s Health, BioInnovation Institute and featuring the panelists: Sara Kindberg, Midwife, PhD. Founder and CEO in GynZone & Vulva Enterprise, angel investor in FemTech, Suzaan Sauerman, angel investor, Women’s Health Evangelist, femtech mentor and consumer tech expert, Christina Høegh Selmer Kirk, CEO & Co-founder of DUSK and Associate Director, Ferring Pharmaceuticals (maternal health), and Anne Færch Jørgensen, impact investor, PhD. in Molecular Biology and women’s health advocate. 

5 TechTruster Takeaways:

1. Women’s health is more than just reproductive issues

As shown by Charlotte Nørgaard Langer in her slide on the subject, there are five primary areas: Conditions that are women-specific such as reproductive issues; Conditions that affect women differently than men such as cardiovascular disease; Conditions that affect women disproportionately such as Osteoporosis; Conditions that affect women based on racial disparities and inequalities such as access to care and systematic racism. 

Charlotte Nørgaard Langer presenting the different areas of women’s health

Because of the gender data health gap (we’ve written about this here and here) there is a huge need to better understand women’s health across all these areas and fill in the missing data, helping women to lead better, healthier and longer lives.

2. Technology can act while research is in progress

Priya Oberoi, the General Partner and Founder of Goddess Gaia Ventures gave an inspiring talk about the investment scene in women’s health which illuminated the need for more activity in this area. She highlighted that as research is being conducted, which can take years to do thoroughly, the smart product movement with wearables and personal tracking devices like those we cover here on TechTruster, are able to fill the data points in the meantime, giving us valuable insights for understanding women’s health. 

3. Menopause is becoming more in focus

As has been seen in the media with programs like DR’s “Overgangsalder” or Time Magazine’s cover of Menopause, menopause is becoming mainstream. As part of the day’s program, the 100 participants were able to choose tables to sit at and discuss particular issues together. At the menopause table, the feeling was one of frustration about the stigma still surrounding menopause, and the urge to bring more awareness to the issue. This author presented the findings from the table’s discussion by focusing on the taboo of menopause and how we need to start talking about it more and making it part of everyday life.

A group of people discussing menopause at the Women's Health Investor Summit
Meeting at the menopause table. Photo: Charlotte Nørgaard Langer

4. Pelvic health needs to be in focus

At the aforementioned tables, there were only three people who sat at the pelvic health table (with 20+ at the other tables). This clearly showed a significant need for more emphasis on this area. There are many pelvic health initiatives but it’s still a vastly underserved area and one which impacts the majority of women’s health issues. Our article here, (in Danish) elaborates on some of these solutions. 

5. There are passionate startups in this space and TechTruster hopes to report soon on these. We met: 

  • Gynzone: Providing online courses for midwifes and OBGYNs with instructive videos. 
  • HEI Therapeutics: Home monitoring for hypothyroidism 
  • Sylvia Health: A non-surgical alternative for women who are waiting for, or cannot have surgery for vaginal bulging. 
  • Induvita: A balloon catheter and a speculum designed specifically for induction of labour 
Startups at the Women's Health Investor Summit
Top left: Gynzone, top right: people meeting and exploring the startups, bottom left: HEI Therapeutics device, bottom right: Induvita’s speculum.

There were many learnings and insights from the Women’s Health Investor Summit about the investment scene and the ways in which it can and will grow, but with the lens of TechTruster and our focus on personal health and technologies, what we took away from this event is hope for the future of women’s health.