MOVE: INTRODUCING TANIA BOLER
This week on the MOVE podcast Ed and Jamie sit down with Tania Boler, founder of Elvie. Tania has achieved a PhD and worked in women’s health for over 10 years. When she became a mum herself, she realised the industry for women’s health technology was hugely undeserved. This drove her to take the plunge and enter the world of entrepreneurship. Tania has been a real game changer for her category, and has launched two products with Elvie. These two products are the Elvie trainer and the Elvie pump. Tania’s brand has rapidly grown and she now has a team of over 100 people working for her company, and Elvie was even nominated for the ‘Brave Brand of the Year’ Marketing Society award last year.
If you’re not clued up on Femtech and all things motherhood, you may be wondering “what is the Elvie Trainer and Pump?”... Well, the Elvie trainer and pump are wearable, silent breast pumps. Last year Elvie launched their breast pump at London Fashion week where a model actually walked the runway while pumping. Tania is particularly proud of this moment as it was the perfect way to start breaking the taboo surrounding breastfeeding in an extremely unique and public way. Tania aims to make her pumps a ‘lifestyle’ product, and not a taboo issue.
Tania never thought she’d go on to found a business as successful as Elvie, but she did know that her sole drive in life was to help fix taboos in society. As a teen she’d faced several trauma’s such as her mother passing away and struggles with mental health. She knew what it was like to not feel comfortable enough to talk about serious problems that affect many people’s day to day lives, and wanted to make a change.
After giving birth and learning more about how the body changes during this time, she became interested in studying women’s pelvic floors, and learning new ways to strengthen them after pregnancy. With her background in women’s health, and technology being at the forefront of our daily lives, she knew this was the route to take to help change women’s lives for the better. She took classic hospital exercises and practices to strengthen the pelvic floor, and with the help of a tech team, designed a device that women could use at home to track the progress of their pelvic strengthening. This type of innovative thinking is what helped Tania break into the Femtech world and lead to her founding of Elvie.
It can be hard to get a product/idea off the ground at first, but Tania shares her best advice with Ed and Jamie to help you guys stay motivated in whatever venture you may be working towards. Tania’s first tip is to stay thick skinned, ‘be a rhino’ and don’t let rejections set you back, if you have an end goal, keep striving to achieve it! Secondly, remember that you are in the driving seat, you need to choose the right investors for you. Lastly, have a plan if things go wrong!
If you want to find out more about Tania’s journey, head over to this week’s podcast to listen in.
Here’s Tania’s top 5 facts about her business and success:
- Tania achieved a PhD and worked in women’s health for over 10 years. When Tania became a mum, she realised that the market for women’s health technology was hugely underserved. This drove her to make the jump into entrepreneurship.
- Since Tania founded Elvie in 2013, the company has launched two products; Elvie Trainer and Elvie Pump, which have been game-changers in their categories and continue to transform the lives of women.
- In April this year, Elvie secured the largest funding round in FemTech history. This has enabled the company to grow to nearly 100 people, and open offices in four locations.
- Tania was listed at number 8 in Business Insider's UK Tech 100 2019 list. This year, Elvie was recognised in the Deloitte Tech Fast 50, and Elvie Pump achieved a Dezeen award for the wearable design category.
- Elvie continues to break taboos and encourage conversations around stigmatised issues in women’s health, leading Elvie to be recognised for Brave Brand of the Year 2019.