Exclusive: Fertility tech startup AiVF raises $25 million
AiVF raked in $25 million in Series A funding led by Insight Partners and Adam Neumann's family office, the Tel Aviv fertility care startup exclusively tells Axios.
Why it matters: IVF clinics are struggling to keep up with mounting demand, as the industry faces a shortage of embryologists and high variability in success rates.
- AiVF's software empowers embryologists with fertility intelligence to standardize and accelerate processes, boasting that it shortens the time to pregnancy and improves predictability.
- The funding gives AiVF the financial wherewithal to enter the U.S. (where it is currently pursuing FDA approval) and to deepen its adoption across Europe.
State of play: IVF historically has been based upon subjective human analysis, with technology old-fashioned and costly, says Daniella Gilboa, an embryologist who co-founded AiVF in 2018 alongside IVF specialist Daniel Seidman.
- Without technology, she says, "there's no way that [IVF clinics] can ever scale" to address today's access problem. "We call it the AI-human team."
- Gilboa's ultimate vision? Revolutionize fertility care such that today's difficult and lengthy IVF experience becomes "quick and friendly".
How it works: AiVF uses machine learning to evaluate embryos during IVF, guiding embryologists as they identify and select what they believe are the embryos with the most promise of a healthy pregnancy.
- Its AI is based upon what it says is the world's largest and most diverse clinic-derived datasets — the latter in terms of age, types of infertility, ethnicity and geography. That's in contrast to what is typically a heavy reliance by datasets on wealthy, white demographics.
- The system is currently assisting with 15 ongoing pregnancies and soon to be the first delivery, Gilboa says.
Of note: Celebrity academic Dan Ariely is AiVF's chief behavioral officer.
Context: VC firms are flooding into fertility tech due to multiple factors: The desire to have children later in life, employers' focus on workplace benefits, and a growing recognition that reproductive wellness is crucial to overall health care.