We are a web-based innovation portal: one part long-range media company covering innovations focused on saving lives in childbirth, one part marketplace for lifesaving ideas and tools.
We were incorporated in May 2009. We evolved to become a marketplace in early 2011 in response to users and we really got going in 2012!
We wanted to start with this niche because it has previously been overshadowed by other global health issues. If our model performs well for maternal/neonatal health, we’d love to expand it.
Maternova started with tools and technologies because there is so much going on in this area and no single source collecting all innovations in one open index. However, because techniques and protocols are often so vital to making tools relevant, we are carefully adding them to the Innovation Index. You will also notice that you can search for structures and systems as well as information technology and transport.
We are technically a for-profit entity—an early stage startup company with a strong social mission. We believe in the power of social enterprise fueling innovation and will support our own entity through a diversified revenue strategy. If we were in a state that supported it we would probably be a B Corp or a low-profit limited liability company (L3C) (see Wikipedia for a definition).
We have developed a unique, simple mapping tool and have several clients using this tool to map networks of clinics and store data on each clinic in an underlying database. We are marketing this mapping tool to non-profits and governments who want to keep track of networks of clinics in a visually accessible way. This is our core revenue strategy to date though we have two other pilots ongoing, including our own obstetric kit.
We have received grants from the S.E.VEN Fund and the Macarthur Foundation (shared with ARHP). We also have a loan and one angel investment. Maternova is in active fundraising mode looking for angel investments to expand our core offerings.
Well yes, and no. We know that groups all over the world have already bought from us directly online. But in many settings large orders require us to build a relationship or bid competitively. A lot of what we do is offline. People find the products online and then negotiate the volume purchases offline.
There are many terrific organizations that have done advocacy and research to bring maternal and newborn health issues to the fore around the globe. There are also dozens of scientist and innovators developing new technologies for global health. But there is only one online platform researching and making it easy to access these technologies: Maternova.