Sexual wellness company Dame Products is targeting audiences at a new price point after raising $7 million in new Series A funding.
The New York–based company launches the Dip vibrator on October 12, which it describes as “an unintimidating, inclusive entry point to pleasure for people who are in the early stages of their sexual wellness journey.” Dip is priced at $49, which is about $50 less than similar Dame products.
Dame was founded in 2014 by CEO Alexandra Fine, who initially wanted to be a sex therapist. She kicked off the company with $575,000 from an Indiegogo campaign and turned Dame into a profitable business that was bootstrapped until December 2020. That was when Fine raised $4 million to expand the team and product line.
Fine told TechCrunch that Dame is known for its products aimed at “innovating for sexual wellness through real people.” The company offers about 30 different items, from the traditional vibrators to gummies to serums.
“About 40% of our products are not vibrators, and we have been able to expand through some tried-and-true processes, tweaked for the product type; then we work with consumers to make something they think is good,” Fine added. “The new funding enables us to continue to expand our product line with Dip, especially our replenishables, do more product innovation and add to our content and community.”
Since the seed round, the company launched several new products, including gummies; settled with the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority to run ads on the subway; and went into Sephora and started its Clinical Board focused on sexual health. In addition to direct-to-consumer and Sephora, Dame is carried by other retailers like Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom and Free People.
Meanwhile, Dame has doubled revenue, customers and employees each year for the past two years, Fine said. With the sexual wellness market expected to reach $125.1 billion by 2026, Fine wants to continue growing faster and stronger, so Dame closed on this new round of funding, a $7 million Series A, earlier this month.
The investment is led by Amboy Street Ventures with participation from Listen Ventures, Flybridge, Echo and Forest Road Company. Dame has now raised a total of $13 million.
Carli Sapir, founding partner of Amboy Street Ventures, told TechCrunch the firm’s thesis is sexual health and women’s health and invests in companies like Dame that are out to destigmatize both of those spaces. We’ve seen other companies doing this as well, including Cake and Emjoy.
“We are seeing the stigma, overall, shift away, especially as mainstream retail has opened its doors to Dame,” Sapir added. “There has been an explosion of startups coming into this space and growing, largely due to the hurdles that Dame has taken down for the rest of the industry.”
Next up, Fine is focused on investing in customer retention, educational content via Dame’s Clinical Board and furthering the company’s retail presence.
“It’s most important to be authentic, ourselves and do what feels good to us,” she said. “We are trying to not get so caught up with what everyone else is doing. We don’t shy away from believing that pleasure is healthy.”
Advice and strategy for early-stage sex tech startup founders
Surviving The 2nd Wave of Corona
‘This too shall pass away’ this famous Persian adage seems to be defeating us again and again in the case of COVID-19. Despite every effort