Maya — an app that keeps track of menstrual health — has got an undisclosed amount of funding from Google vice president Southeast Asia and India, Rajan Anandan.
The app essentially generates a personal health assistant through data analytics and a mechanical configuration, which works based on earlier data provided by the women into the app. It helps them to gain larger knowledge around their health and what is happening to them in case of any bodily change.
“Maya helps women with the knowledge and support to understand how their fertility works and enables them to take ownership of their reproductive health. Today, less than 1% of our user base is from India. As awareness and adoption increases, we expect 50% of our users to come from India,” the Bengaluru-based founder, John Paul, tells SheThePeople.TV.
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Paul tells SheThePeople.TV more about the idea behind the start-up. “Maya was ideated over a dinner table conversation with my wife Jane in 2012. The app was originally called LoveCycles as it captured the spirit of “Love your Cycles”. However, we recently changed the name to Maya as it better represented our mission, which is to build a personal health assistant for women. Since our inception, we have obsessed about decoding each day of the monthly cycle to help women manage their health better.”
There are 355 million women of reproductive age in India who need mechanisms and structures in place to meet their menstrual needs. Only 12% of these 355 million women use sanitary napkins and over 88% of women resort to alternatives like unsanitised cloth, ashes and husk sand. The persistent taboo around menstruation is a major factor for the lack of awareness.
Also Read: Myths and Taboos About Menstruation
The response to the app has been staggering. “We are now more than 6.5 million downloads strong,” Paul says to SheThePeople.TV. Reports say that 1.2 million people from around 50 countries use the app every month. The tracker is available in 13 languages- Hindi, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, Tamil, German, Swedish, Chinese, Japanese and Korean.
The funding is of course a welcome and important stage for the start-up. “The funds will be used to enhance the user experience, product development and to expand the user base of Maya in India,” said a statement as reported by Livemint.
This is not the first startup that has caught Anandan’s eye. He has invested in over 30 companies including Hello English, wiziq.com, Travelkhana, POPxo, Taxspanner.com and others.