There’s a major lack of male fertility specialists across the country, which means many couples who struggle with fertility aren’t getting answers about how to best address their trouble with conceiving.
Posterity Health — a Colorado-based startup founded last year — is working to address that issue. The company is “the only digital male fertility platform that encourages men to take action and gain knowledge on their fertility status,” said the company’s female CEO, Pam Pure, in a recent interview. On Tuesday, Posterity closed an oversubscribed funding round of $7.5 million. The round was led by Distributed Ventureswith participation from FCA Venture Partners and WVV Capital.
The startup’s digital health platform offers a combination of virtual visits, at-home diagnostics and in-person consultations to assess and improve patients’ fertility status. Some of the services included in the platform are baseline fertility assessments, sperm preservation, semen analysis, pregnancy loss consultations, diagnostic workups, vasectomy reversals and gender-affirming care, Pure said.
With its new influx of funds, the company plans to hire more reproductive urologists and expand its platform to be able to offer treatment on a more national scale. This coincides nicely with the recent push for more equality in fertility benefits, Pure said, referring to the fact that more employers are providing their workers with coverage for male fertility treatments.
“For the first time, fertility benefit managers are covering male fertility services,” she declared.
For example, fertility benefit manager Progyny recently launched a program that ensures consistent coverage and reimbursement for male fertility services that have historically existed on a cash-pay model. Until recently, men have foregone fertility care because they can’t afford the out-of-pocket costs. But now more men with abnormal semen analysis can seek proactive care, Pure pointed out.
Progyny isn’t the only fertility benefit manager covering male care. For instance, Kindbody provides integrated care that includes patients of all genders in the clinical process. Maven Clinic is also embracing male coverage and care, Pure pointed out. She said these companies will help create awareness about the importance of the male fertility evaluation and help direct men in need of care to Posterity.
Pure acknowledged that there are multiple at-home semen analysis kits on the market that consumers can choose from, such as those made by Bird&Be or Fellow. However, she contends that Posterity is unique because of its comprehensive approach to male fertility care — the startup uses each patient’s test results to create a personalized treatment plan.
“Posterity’s platform helps males with fertility issues get the access and specific support they need to improve sperm quality,” Pure said. “We believe that the future of women’s healthcare includes the male, and that the stigma surrounding male infertility can be shifted through education, engagement and treatment.”
Even though fundraising has gotten more difficult amid harsh macroeconomic forces, Pure said Posterity didn’t have too much trouble raising capital for this seed funding round. Investors asked her to demonstrate three key things about her company: clear attention to detail for execution plans, strong management, and services that are positioned in a recession-resistant market.
Pure’s advice for other startups looking to raise capital is to be clear on the mission and show a thorough understanding of market opportunity and competition. She also suggested startups should set realistic growth goals and produce focused plans to achieve those targets.
“Investors are digging deeper and want more clarity on the status of the business, the plans to scale and the opportunity to create a new and powerful solution,” Pure said. “The desire for innovative category creators is as strong as ever – you just really need to be one.”
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