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Rocket DAO ecosystem

How Flo was raising a new round: privacy scandals, marketing successes and general trends

Friday, September 10, 2021

The Belarusian startup Flo announced a new round: $50M with an estimate of $800M.

Startup Jedi

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Lead investors were large European funds —  Target Global and VNV Global. The previous round for $7.5M, valued at $230M, took place two years ago.

The startup is developing an application for the analysis of women's health Flo, and its new round clearly demonstrates the relevance of the FemTech industry. Interestingly, Flo's previous round coincided with the return of the female cycle tracking feature to the Health app on iOS. Showing the relevance of such solutions, the company has a positive effect on the development of healthy competition in the field of specific technological solutions for women, and, accordingly, the emergence of new projects and proposals.

According to the company, the app has already been downloaded by 200 millions people worldwide. The team understands exactly how to do quality marketing: their active paid subscriber base has quadrupled over the course of a year. They form a loyal community by providing a range of additional personalized features along with cycle tracking, as well as an information hub —  all based on the principles of fact-checking and collaboration with leading experts in the field of women's health.

But not always their marketing decisions, especially their tools, are so unambiguous. Flo requests and stores a large amount of personal information, including the search history and contact list of users. In 2019, the Wall Street Journal published an article, which, among other things, revealed how such tracking applications share data with Facebook.

Since then, Flo has gone through interactions with the Federal Trade Commission, the US government's consumer protection agency. In January of this year, the proceedings came to an end, and a few months ago a conclusion was issued on which Flo promises to continue to keep data private, including from Facebook and Google. Today, the company's website posted a plate about the settlement agreement with the Federal Trade Commission, according to which it undertakes not to transfer any information without the user's consent.

10 Sep 2021

 

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