Barcelona-based Emjoy, an audio app for ladies that sells a story of sexual self-care and empowerment, has picked up $three million in seed funding led by JME Ventures, with present investor Nauta Capital collaborating.
The femtech startup believes it has lit on a significant alternative to focus on girls with sex-positive subscription audio content material that’s centered on sexual empowerment, intimate schooling and sensuous leisure — all wrapped in unapologetically direct digital advertising and marketing.
Neither is it alone in in search of to construct a model round such ‘feminine first’ audio content material. (One other startup that springs to thoughts on this ‘aware intercourse’ house is Ferly, for instance.) However Emjoy reckons there’s all to play for on this nascent house — which it says is benefitting not solely from progress towards feminine empowerment lately however the rise in reputation of podcasting and audiobooks.
“My inspiration for founding Emjoy is predicated on my private expertise and the experiences of many girlfriends of mine. All of us had normalized not climaxing when having sexual encounters,” Andrea Oliver, CEO and co-founder tells TechCrunch.
“After I started researching this I got here throughout the pleasure hole, with some research displaying that 40% of ladies have some kind of sexual dysfunction. Having been within the VC world and having seen the large success of startups within the psychological well being and health areas, I used to be shocked once I couldn’t discover an app specializing in sexual wellbeing.”
“What units us aside from opponents is providing a broad library of each wellbeing and leisure audios, being extraordinarily reliable and dependable due to our in-house intercourse therapist, partnering with sexual wellbeing consultants, and eventually being a product firm that provides extra than simply content material,” she goes on, discussing the aggressive panorama. “An instance of that is our ‘Each day Routines’ characteristic, which permits our customers to take 30-day challenges to create new habits, equivalent to accepting their our bodies.”
Oliver moved from Nauta Capital, the place she’d been working with startups, to founding her personal enterprise in January 2019, together with co-founder Daniel Tamas, CTO — taking in an preliminary €1M from her former VC employer to get the app to market.
Emjoy launched worldwide in early 2020 and went on to clock up 80,000 registered customers in its first six months. It now has 150,000 lively customers globally, with the U.S. and the U.Okay. its principal markets (NB: content material is at the moment solely out there in English).
Nearly 10% of “not too long ago acquired” lively customers paying a subscription, per Oliver.
“The ladies who use Emjoy are usually of their 20s, and whereas most are cisgender we’ve got additionally obtained tons of optimistic suggestions from trans and non-binary folks. Actually, Emjoy is about attending to know what you want and having fun with your self, whatever the gender of your companion(s),” she says.
“We’re constructing a wellbeing model for ladies as a result of we see that sexual wellbeing is a significant a part of total wellbeing. We need to normalize this,” Oliver provides, nothing that Emjoy’s “wellbeing positioning” contains “leisure content material with our erotic tales”.
The startup’s group has grown to 11 individuals at this level — together with an in-house intercourse therapist. Most of Emjoy’s content material is produced in home at this level.
Discussing its method to content material, which the app touts as “backed by science and supervised by our in-house intimacy therapist”, Oliver says: “For every principle or guided session we attempt to discover a scientific research to again what we are saying, and we work with our in-house intercourse therapist who creates a lot of the content material and supervises it. We additionally companion with exterior collaborators who’re consultants in numerous fields equivalent to sexual trauma, physique acceptance, relationships and so forth.”
“You will need to supply science-based content material as a result of a lot of the sexual content material that’s out there at the moment, in blogs or on YouTube, for instance, could be very untrustworthy. We need to be a trusted and protected atmosphere for our customers,” she provides.
The brand new seed funding might be ploughed into making extra content material — with plans for extra collaborations with “main lecturers, consultants and influencers inside the sexual wellbeing and schooling house” — and the overarching intention of constructing the “category-defining” app within the feminine sexual wellness house.
Requested why he’s enthusiastic about girls’s sexual wellbeing audio as a class, investor Samuel Gil, companion at JME Ventures, advised us the house is fascinating as a result of it’s been so missed.
“It has been ignored or forgotten for a really very long time however that’s now altering with girls being extra empowered than ever,” he stated, including: “Ladies with sexual wellbeing points is perhaps reluctant to seek for assist in a extra conventional manner because of disgrace or friction. A digital product is right to broaden entry to sexual wellbeing options.”
He additionally lauded the “actually immersive experiences” attainable with audio content material which he stated “facilitates content material manufacturing”. (Or, effectively, it’s rather a lot simpler to get erotic sounds previous ‘family-friendly’ App Retailer evaluate guidelines than hardcore visuals.)
On investing in Emjoy particularly, Gil added: “It’s a nascent class with no clear leaders but. Emjoy’s imaginative and prescient, ambition, and above all, execution, to date makes us consider that they’re actually well-positioned to take the main place very quickly.”
Requested what she believes this new rush of female-pleasure-focused audio startups are tapping into, Olivier says: “It is extremely a lot an underserved want. We go hand-in-hand with our customers to assist them uncover their our bodies, achieve confidence, and discover what turns them on, amongst many different issues. We and our customers see Emjoy as a journey, with our audio content material serving to customers discover what they like and who they’re.
“We’re not telling customers what they need to do, or how they need to really feel as a result of there isn’t any regular, there’s no ‘ought to’ or ‘shouldn’t’. Every private expertise and physique is exclusive and Emjoy adapts to every person’s distinctive journey.”
“Our customers are additionally producing new habits with Emjoy and we have gotten an on a regular basis instrument for ladies who need to really feel extra assured or desire a protected, feminine pleasure-centric and trusted place to get within the temper, versus mainstream porn,” she provides.