fermata brings the world to Japan
"fermata brings the world to Japan, showcasing 157 leading global companies at Asia’s largest femtech industry conference to date."
Over 1,400 cross-sector attendees gather to see the latest in femtech technology over a three-day conference in Tokyo, Japan.
On October 22nd - 24th 2021, fermata Inc. (“fermata”) - a Japan- and Singapore-based femtech* store and market entry facilitator - hosted Asia’s largest global femtech conference to date called femtech Fes! 2021. Over the course of three days, the event featured the latest direct-to-consumer products and medical services in women's healthcare at every stage of development to raise awareness and engagement. With 157 companies from 27 countries across 6 regions exhibiting, the event sold out all advanced reservations. With growing interest across sectors, the 1,441 attendees* included government officials, and leading figures from academia, business, retail, medical professionals and end-users.
*The exhibition was held with the safety of our staff and visitors as our top priority, and we formulated guidelines for countermeasures against infectious diseases.
Building Awareness and Engagement
Visitors enjoyed views of Tokyo and a packed schedule split between a conference hall for industry expert discussions, interactive workshop room and exhibition space. To encourage open conversation, facilitators enabled guests to ask questions anonymously. Workshops included interactive sessions on topics such as masturbation, menopause and creating vulva pictures using felt to learn female anatomy.
In the main exhibition space, all 157 companies had bilingual translations of the product and founders stories - as the largest space in the conference, guests were encouraged products which were segmented into "Menstruation," "Fertility and Infertility," "Pregnancy and Postpartum," "Menopause," "Diseases Specific to Women," "Sexual Wellness," and "Other/Mental Health".
One visitor said, "I came here to look for something related to menstruation, but I was surprised to see exhibits for pregnant women, menopausal women, and even men. I thought it was an event that all people could enjoy. The self-pleasure items for women were also very cute and surprising. I hope it will become a trend that women can also use such items, even though it is still generally considered taboo." Some of the participants voiced their awareness of their own needs and frustrations, as well as their sense of values that they had unknowingly taken for granted.
Alongside more established global companies such as Elvie (UK), Kegg (US), Breathe ilo (Austria), and Elidah (US) exhibiting companies also featured leading Japanese brands including varinos a clinical testing company specializing in genome analysis technology targeting fertility/infertility; Next Innovation (ネクイノ) Japan’s first preventative telehealth platform developed by HR and medical professionals focusing on gynecology; and Nopole, a crowdsourced inclusive sexual wellness brand created by and for the trans (FTM) community.
As a company dedicated to ‘transforming taboos into triumphs’, the event was designed to build awareness through interactive space and events. Based on feedback after organizing dozens of events, Fermata developed a signalling option using wristbands to safeguard participants' privacy preferences. Depending on the color of wristbands, guests could indicate their willingness to be interviewed and/or photographed to protect privacy.
Comments from visitors acknowledged ongoing cultural taboos and the eagerness to make women’s health more open through events like femtechFes!:
"Some of you must have been brave enough to come to this event. Some people must have had the courage to come to this event, and I think these wristbands will allow them to participate with peace of mind,"
"This is a great initiative because the event deals with a sensitive topic. I thought it was great that so much thought was put into the event.
On the day of the event, visitors who signalled an openness to being interviewed shared further comments on the future of women’s health to show consumer awareness and excitement for the future of femtech:
- "In Japan, there is an atmosphere that makes it difficult to talk openly about sex, but the staff talked about sex without any hesitation, so it was fun to be able to face it without feeling embarrassed at all.”
- "I participated in this event about a month after learning about the term femtech. It was the first time for me to see products from overseas, so it was very interesting.”
- "I was surprised by the wide range of femtech items from overseas. I think it would be good if the Japanese femtech market also expands more.”
- “I came here to learn about female-related business, as I am considering whether to enter it. I had only imagined menstruation-related products, but it was interesting to learn for the first time that the market covers such a wide range of areas.”
The Future of femtech in Asia
Amina Sugimoto DrPh, CEO and Founder of fermata, shares “This year’s femtech Fes coincides with fermata’s second year anniversary - a great achievement for any startup, but especially in an industry like femtech where the impact is life-changing. Our first femtech Fes event had just over 50 exhibitors, for us to have tripled the scale this year despite the pandemic is an exciting indication of the growing demand, making this an even more meaningful milestone. With fermata at the helm, the future of femtech in Asia is set to grow at an unprecedented speed - this event is just the beginning of more to come.”
As Asia's leading company in the femtech market based in Tokyo and Singapore, fermata provides full-cycle market-entry support, covering everything from legislation, licensing, distribution, consumer education and empowerment. Companies interested in exhibiting in femtech Fes 2022 are welcome to register their expression of interest here.
What is femtech?
femtech is a coined word that combines the words "Female" and "Technology". In general, it refers to devices, applications, and products that use technology to address health issues specific to women, such as menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. fermata believes that femtech is not only about products, but also about movements such as "a culture where women value self-care" and "everyone should be the best person to understand their own body. In addition to products, fermata believes that movements such as "a culture where women value self-care" and "a movement where everyone understands their own body best" are also important aspects of "femtech.
About fermata Inc
fermata is a Tokyo- and Singapore based femtech store and market entry facilitator. With both online and offline sales channels, fermata specializes in providing localization services, and is a Market Authorization Holder for cosmetic, quasi-drug and medical device (Class I and II) products. Our mission is to turn taboos into triumphs by making femtech products and services available to people in Asia.
CEO Amina Sugimoto, DrPH is open for interview questions in English and Japanese.
For press inquiries, please contact Lia Carmago: email@example.com