We Founder Circle (WFC), a startup investment platform, in continuation of its mission to seed fund early-stage startups, has invested in Avni, a startup focussed on conscious and holistic menstrual care. The brand offers a wide range of menstrual care products including – Avni reusable cloth pads, Avni organic cotton pads and Avni menstrual cups.
The seed round worth USD 75K witnessed participation from key investors including Amit Tyagi, entrepreneur turned investor, Srikanth Iyengar, a senior executive in the technology services industry and an investor in edtech, healthcare and consumer startups. Avni plans to utilize funds in product development and expanding the product line. It also plans to exhaust a part of the fundraise in creating more awareness through various on-ground initiatives.
Sujata Pawar, Co-founder, Avni, said that currently what they see in the market is a lot of chemical based products that cause serious vaginal diseases and skin problems. “This turns out to a bigger challenge for women and with sensitive skin. We are trying to provide natural and reusable solutions so that women do not have to compromise by using plastic and chemical based products,” she said. “We started with antimicrobial reusable and organic cotton sanitary pads as 80% of the market share of feminine products is dominated by the pads. Gradually, we moved on to launch more products in the menstrual care category.”
Pawar said they have served over 5,000 women. In regards to the funding, she said they strategically raised a small amount in this round. “Keeping our growth plans in mind, we aim at a bigger round by August 2021.
Neeraj Tyagi, Co-Founder and CEO, We Founder Circle, said the market of feminine hygiene products is expected to grow to INR 58.62 billion by 2024. “And with innovative start-ups like Avni coming into the play, there will be a niche of customers for natural options. The space is less penetrated and not so competitive yet.” Tyagi said this highlights the abundant scope it holds.
Due to lack of organic and natural products, a lot of women are left with no choice but to use chemical based sanitary products that cause skin challenges. To address the same, Avni started working on alternatives and introduced tested, innovative products, made with carefully selected ingredients. The startup further identified that there is a lack of awareness among women users towards reusable menstrual products and to help them with the queries it also launched a 24X7 support period helpline.