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Ro builds out women’s health business with $225M acquisition  

Modern Fertility co-founders Afton Vechery (center) and Carly Leahy (right) will lead Ro’s women’s health business after the acquisition. Photo courtesy of Ro.

After raising $500 million in funding, Ro is putting some of that cash toward building out its women’s health brand.

The direct-to-consumer health startup acquired Modern Fertility, a startup offering at-home fertility tests, for $225 million. As part of the deal, Modern Fertility co-founders Afton Vechery and Carly Leahy will lead Ro’s women’s health business.

“We now have the opportunity to dramatically accelerate our vision of supporting women in every single step of the journey in reproductive care and beyond,” Vechery, CEO of Modern Fertility, said in a news release.

Founded in 2017, Ro started with two direct-to-consumer health brands: Roman, for men, and Rory, for women. It also has a smoking cessation brand, Zero.

It’s one of several companies selling mail-order prescriptions for common conditions after a brief online consultation, which normally involves filling out an assessment and waiting for a doctor to review it.

Since them, Ro has quickly expanded its business to offer a wider range of services. It added virtual urgent care visits, and in-home testing with its recent acquisition of Workpath.

Modern Fertility would build on that by offering at-home hormone tests and one-on-one consultations with a fertility nurse. It uses a cash-pay model that is similar to Ro’s. Its lead product is a finger-prick hormone test that sells for about $160, though the company cautions that its test can only be used for wellness purposes — not to make a diagnosis.

The startup also sells pregnancy tests, ovulation tests and supplements.

Not only would the deal scale up Ro’s women’s health business, but it would also let Modern Fertility broaden its reach using Ro’s infrastructure.

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