July 16, 2021
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. —Menstrual Mates, a startup focused on period care, has received $20,000 in early-stage funding from the Elevate Ventures Community Ideation Fund.
Chief Executive Officer Cindy Belardo launched Menstrual Mates in 2019, and Chief Marketing Officer Drew Jarvis joined the company in 2020. The startup is focused on developing and launching its innovative menstrual cup and breaking the global stigma around menstruation through reusable period products, inclusive education, and global social giveback. Menstrual Mates currently offers merchandise and a kid’s period education graphic novel designed to educate about the biological process of menstruation in a fun, inclusive approach. The company plans to launch its main product – the Una Cup, by spring of 2022.
“While working with Cindy and Drew on their latest capital raise I have been so impressed with their dedication as startup founders,” said Cy Megnin, Elevate Ventures’ entrepreneur-in-residence serving Velocities, a partnership that supports startups in south-central Indiana. “They are carving out a niche in the $20 billion+ global period care market.”
The funding from Elevate will help Menstrual Mates complete development of its menstrual cup and introduce the product to market in six months. Belardo anticipates sales in 2021 rising 700% over 2020.
“The investment Elevate Ventures has made into our company through financial commitment, networking, and mentorship has brought us to the next step in development,” said Belardo. “It really means a lot as we turn our vision into reality.”
Menstrual Mates received a pre-seed investment from the Elevate Nexus Regional Pitch Competition in May 2021.
Elevate’s Community Ideation Fund is made possible through its partnership with Velocities. The Community Ideation Fund is available through the state’s 21st Century Research and Technology Fund, which is overseen by the Indiana Economic Development Corp. and promotes economic growth and innovation-driven public-private partnerships in Indiana.