Riley, a women’s health company that launched a period product subscription service, is undertaking a €2m funding round as it plots expansion into the UK and Europe.
The company, founded in 2021 by Lauren Duggan, Fiona Parfrey and Aine Kilkenny in Schull, Co Cork, is already speaking with various potential investors, including angel investors, family offices and funds. Riley has already raised €750,000.
Speaking with the Sunday Independent, Riley chief executive Fiona Parfrey said the funding was coming off the back of a very positive year in which it grew its business by 12 times.
“Most of our sales are in our home market, but we are really looking to try and expand internationally now,” she said.
“So, the raise will be for a number of things. Market expansion and marketing costs will always be a big portion of the budget, but we are really excited to look over to the UK and to Europe and see if we can replicate the success we have had in the Irish market over there.
“We will also be investing in research and development and new product development, which is a huge part of our vision for the business to be a life-long female health brand. And with that, we will be increasing our headcount – expanding the team in Ireland, adding top talent to help fuel the growth.”
With Riley speaking with potential backers, Parfrey said she would like to get some “strategic investors” on board.
‘We believe period products should be treated like toilet paper and should be readily available in every bathroom’
“Whether that be angel investors themselves that have run a start-up and scaled it successfully and help guide us on that route, or a fund that has other consumer brands that it has helped grow internationally as well.”
Riley sells its products, including eco-friendly period products and a new female health probiotic, via various methods, including a consumer subscription service and a corporate arm. Through the corporate arm, it supplies enterprises, universities, offices and hospitality groups with its products for staff, customers and students.
“We believe period products should be treated like toilet paper and should be readily available in every bathroom”, said Parfrey. “Corporate has been a great channel for us. We have had really positive feedback from employers.”
Looking to 2023, Parfrey is hoping to break into new markets. However, beyond this year, she hopes to take the business to the “four corners of the world”.
Beyond the recently launched probiotic, the CEO added that Riley was working on other female health supplements. She said the company had “so many ideas” for other avenues of female health that it believes it can improve, from menstruation to menopause.
Parfrey added Riley was exploring retail opportunities, which could help build brand awareness.