Finnish baby tech startup builds momentum with investments from Oura and Natural Cycles founders
The original pioneers within wearable tech are conquering a new field – as Oura-veterans join forces with the Finnish baby tech startup Nucu™ to elevate the baby tech industry. With innovation stemming from pilots in neonatal care units, Nucu hopes to help both babies and parents sleep better.
While the wellness tech industry has grown exponentially during the past years, most innovations are still geared towards adult consumers choosing to focus on their own wellbeing. In an effort to help out newborns and their parents, the wearable pioneers at the Finnish baby tech startup Nucu are instead creating solutions that benefit the entire family.
Instead of focusing on only monitoring the baby’s sleep, Nucu’s first-generation multisensory baby pad provides familiar sounds and vibrations to soothe the baby. With support from the algorithm experts that built Oura, Nucu seeks to combine science-backed multisensory stimulation, biosignals and portability into a new category of baby tech products – the multisensory baby pad.
“Multisensory stimulation is the combination of more than one sense, such as touch and hearing”, says Hannu Kinnunen, PhD, Nucu technical advisor and former Chief Scientific Officer at Oura Health, “Holding the baby close to the parent’s chest is the ultimate form of multisensory stimulation. Nucu’s current and future solutions aim to strengthen this natural form of togetherness.”
The Nucu solution focuses on togetherness
The Nucu Pad has been piloted together with neonatal care experts at University Hospital of Oulu NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) since 2016, and due to growing demand from families, Nucu is working to make the Nucu Pad available for customers globally. The recently raised € 0.95m seed round, led by deep tech VC Voima Ventures, ensures that the company can start bringing the solution to the consumer market.
“Nucu has an unique approach of developing and applying science-backed methods in babytech. The solution has the potential to create a significant positive impact for families with a newborn”, states Jussi Sainiemi, Partner at Voima Ventures.
In connection with the investment round, the company brought on several wellbeing tech pioneers as advisors to accelerate their international growth: Oura co-founder Petteri Lahtela will join the company as the chairman of the board, while women’s health tech pioneer Dr. Raoul Scherwitzl joins as an advisor.
“The first months of a baby’s life are fundamental for their future growth and well-being”, says Dr. Raoul Scherwitzl, CEO and co-founder at women’s health company Natural Cycles, “Millennials and Gen Z parents are embracing tech that enhances wellness and health, for themselves and their family. The Nucu team is well-positioned to add a human touch to the baby monitoring industry.”
“Based on the NICU pilots, the familiar sounds of the mom’s heartbeat through the Nucu Pad can help calm the baby and foster a sense of togetherness which could have lifelong benefits”, says Juha Hannula, Nucu founder and CEO, “With newborns, positive experiences during their first few months can have a beneficial lifelong impact.”