- After a yr in beta testing, Poppy Seed Well being has launched its maternal well being app to the general public.
- It helps pregnant and postpartum ladies get linked with doulas, midwives, and nurses.
- The corporate’s founder had the thought for Poppy Seed Well being after struggling her personal miscarriage.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Being pregnant will not be all pickles and ice cream.
Poppy Seed Health, a maternal well being startup based by Simmone Taitt, desires to offer mothers and mamas-to-be entry to emotional and mental-health help on-demand.
The corporate is releasing its
app to the general public and asserting $1.6 million in pre-seed funding led by Alexis Ohanian’s enterprise agency Seven Seven Six. Poppy Seed is scaling up now that it is raised the funding, the corporate tells Insider solely. Plans for the capital embrace product improvement and hiring, and creating merchandise for each step of the trail to parenthood.
The deal was led by Seven Seven Six’s Katelin Holloway, the one-time head of individuals at Reddit, who’s now an investing companion on the agency began by her former Reddit boss. The spherical additionally contains Chelsea Clinton’s Metrodora and a stacked roster of feminine angels equivalent to Julia Cheek of Everly Well being, Halle Tecco of Natalist, and author Roxane Homosexual.
After a yr in beta, Poppy Seed is now out with a text-messaging app for pregnant and postpartum ladies.
When a person indicators up, they’re positioned in a gaggle chat with three to 4 “advocates,” who’re are doulas, nurses, and midwives, to assist reply any questions or ship them assets. The corporate guarantees a reply inside 90 seconds.
The app prices $29 a month. For now, customers can anticipate to pay for the service out-of-pocket. And $2 from each subscription goes towards offering the service at no cost to an individual on Medicaid, Taitt mentioned.
“The maternal healthcare system could be very a lot arrange as a billing system,” Poppy Seed’s Taitt mentioned. “But it surely additionally focuses on the infant and never the individual carrying the infant, and that’s the place we step in as doulas, midwives, and nurses.”
The story of Poppy Seed’s founding is private.
5 years in the past, Taitt, who was working in gross sales at a startup on the time, went for a routine go to at her obstetrician’s workplace earlier than work, when she was early in her first being pregnant. The physician seemed for a heartbeat, however there wasn’t one.
“I used to be pregnant after which I wasn’t,” Taitt mentioned. “I did not know I would had a miscarriage.”
She bought dressed and left the workplace, quietly sobbing. Then the denial set in, Taitt mentioned. She wasn’t bleeding like she had seen ladies do on tv, and she or he requested herself how may the physician make sure. She later pulled up Google on her telephone on the lookout for solutions and spent the remainder of the day taking place web rabbit holes.
That evening, Taitt was sitting on her sofa alone when she found a web-based message board for doulas, who’re skilled to advise and provide emotional and bodily consolation to a mom throughout her being pregnant, however are usually not medical professionals. In studying via the thread, she noticed that her expertise was common, and that she wasn’t alone.
She did not realize it then, however her loss planted a seed for her future startup, Poppy Seed.
Final yr, Taitt used the cash she put aside from years of sales-consulting to bootstrap her enterprise. The earliest model of the product simply used WhatsApp to attach customers with doulas, midwives, and nurses. Taitt was in each group chat, she mentioned. Later, she employed just some builders and a product supervisor, who came to visit from Fb.
The staff gave customers the choice to name or video-chat somebody within the community, however nobody needed to choose up the telephone, Taitt mentioned. They most well-liked to textual content as a result of it was much less awkward to share intimate particulars with a stranger that method.
Poppy Seed is “cornering the market” of pregnant ladies sitting on the bathroom and texting, Taitt mentioned, jokingly.
The corporate bought an early sign-ups bump from the pandemic, when for a short while hospitals didn’t allow birthing companions within the supply room. Taitt didn’t specify what number of members it has or “advocates” it has enrolled.
Taitt’s imaginative and prescient is to sometime help ladies at each stage of parenthood, together with a useful resource for infertility. Within the meantime, the startup has a free-to-use hotline for girls who’re experiencing miscarriage or being pregnant loss.
Taitt mentioned she’s reminded on a regular basis that she was as soon as her personal startup’s goal person.
“I constructed the factor that I actually wanted essentially the most,” she mentioned.
Are you a startups insider with perception to share? Contact Melia Russell through electronic mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Sign at (603) 913-3085. Open DMs on Twitter @meliarobin.