LatchAid secures £ 1 million seed investment led by Innovate UK – UK Tech Investment News

Start up Femtech, LatchAidraised £ 1 million to grow her breastfeeding and early parenting support app, teaching new mothers hands-on skills and helping them fight loneliness, postnatal depression and physical pain.

LatchAid is a pioneering app that uses state-of-the-art interactive technology and 3D avatars to help expectant mothers and new mothers intuitively learn breastfeeding skills.

The app also connects mothers to close-knit peer-to-peer support groups, live experts who can provide 1-2-1 advice, and an AI-powered empathic virtual support chatbot – all to provide experience and company customized, 24/7.

LatchAid was founded by CGI specialist Dr. Chen Mao Davies, who previously worked on the Academy Award-winning and BAFTA-winning visual effects for the Hollywood blockbuster, Gravity and Blade Runner 2049.

Driven by her own struggles with breastfeeding and faced with a profound personal challenge, she collaborated with film industry colleagues and experts in infant nutrition, maternal health and artificial intelligence to develop the technology behind LatchAid.

“I was determined to breastfeed my baby,” says Chen, “but no one told me how difficult and painful it can be.

“I developed mastitis and thrush and it went on for weeks with mom and baby crying during feeding time. I just felt such a failure: I couldn’t breastfeed my baby. His weight dropped and I developed postnatal depression.

“As a technologist, I was frankly shocked by the lack of innovation in this space. We had peer support groups once a week, which were helpful, but what about 2am when you are alone, in pain and at your lowest point? “

The UK has the lowest breastfeeding rate in the worldwith 90% of British women who stop breastfeeding before they want to due to pain, health problems and / or lack of support.

LatchAid’s £ 1m funding boost comes from multiple sources – a mix of innovation loans Innovating the UKa convertible loan note of the KQ Labs equity acceleration and investment program by experienced business angel investors.

The group of angels was led by Dan Cobley, former CEO of Google UK and Ireland, and also includes Eileen Burbidge MBE, described by Fortune Magazine as the “Queen of British VC”, along with Priya Oberoi, founding partner of the women’s-focused health care fund, Goddess Gaia Ventures, among others.

LatchAid’s investment journey began with the awarding of a prestigious Innovate UK “Women in Innovation” award and was supported throughout Innova UK EDGE Access to financial specialist, Ed Tellwright, who helped LatchAid develop a clear, compelling and credible investment proposition.

“Ed really helped me restructure my speech, make it impactful, and follow an investor’s thought process,” says Chen, “it proved to be a great impetus for our investment journey.”

Funds from this round will be used to increase the technical and commercial teams and to expand the company’s B2B offerings to healthcare organizations such as licensed prescription apps, companies for employee benefit schemes, and insurance companies for packages. health insurance.

“Chen has already achieved so much with such limited resources,” says Dan Cobley. “I am convinced that, with this funding and the support of such a large group of Angels, LatchAid will become a tremendous positive force in this critical health area, first in the UK and then around the world.”

LatchAid currently offers 24/7 digital support to users in 84 countries and is available for download on the App Store. The company recently completed a successful pilot project with 12 NHS trusts and the HCRG group across the UK, demonstrating positive economic and health benefits.

Innovate UK EDGE will continue to support as this Femtech innovator helps moms redefine their relationship with breastfeeding.

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LatchAid secures £ 1 million seed investment led by Innovate UK – UK Tech Investment News

Source link LatchAid secures £ 1 million seed investment led by Innovate UK – UK Tech Investment News

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