Interview with CEO Natalie Rechberg-Egly
A look behind the Scenes
Meet Natalie on a quick Q&A about founding Daysy and her passion for womens health.
Based in Switzerland, 36 year-old Natalie is the CEO of Valley Electronics and is founder of Daysy, the hormone-free and hassle-free fertility management system that allows women to track and chart their menstrual cycle so they can take back control of their fertility, health and well-being.
Natalie, who is passionate about women having the information they need to make informed choices about their fertility and contraception, created Daysy. With over 30 years of scientific research to support it, Daysy isn‘t just a thermometer, she‘s a mini computer that tracks, stores and analyses basal body temp data and includes the data from millions of cycles for algorithm creation making Daysy the smart choice for both women who want to come off of hormonal birth control as well as those who are planning pregnancy
What’s the idea behind Daysy?
«It all started with my father. My father is the founder of Lady-Comp so I grew up knowing all about FAM – the Fertility Awareness Method. His company existed long before ‘fertility tracking’ became a trend, and despite studying in Spain, Switzerland and Scotland and briefly working in New York and later in Zurich, I always knew that I wanted to work in the same field as my father. I mean, what is more beneficial and rewarding than creating an alternative to hormonal contraception?
Being able to help women to connect with their cycle and learn about their own body and fertility has been my driving force. Over the years, while working in every department of Lady-Comp, I studied the market and noticed that hardware that connected to a smartphone would be the future of family planning. The pill sales were stagnating, and women were looking for a healthy, hormone-free alternative. I saw the need for a simple, fast, accurate product, with an easy display of the most important information, which fits around the busy lifestyle we all have. I love beautiful products and I’m addicted to my smartphone.
I like to be accurately informed about what’s going on in my body, without having to spend hours analyzing or inputting data. So I conceived Daysy.»
How did it go from an idea in your head to a product that so many women now use, rely on and love?
«I knew what it had to be.
First and foremost, it had to be safe and it had to be accurate. This is why Daysy is a medical device with all the science to back it up. It does all the math for you which minimizes user errors, because it's so easy: Red light (fertile) – Green light (infertile) – Yellow light (learning phase) – Flashing purple (you’re about to get your period). Finally, it had to be able to connect to your smartphone so you always have access to your cycle and fertility data which is shareable with your partner and/or doctor.»
When did Daysy hit the market?
«We started selling in May of 2014 in Switzerland. We had one person for shipping and customer support, a CTO and me. My boyfriend at the time (he’s now my husband) moved to Switzerland and started working at the company as Mr. Finance. He now does all the planning, numbers and is our Quality Control Manager.
Three years later, we’ve expanded into 13 countries so far. We have 22 employees, as well as some amazing external team advisers. There’s no hierarchy, everyone who starts working with the company starts with customer support. There’s no better way to understand both the customer and the product.»
Why is it called Daysy?
Why is it important to you that Daysy is not just a fertility monitor, but a device that monitors menstrual cycles too?
«When I turned 30, I started having very bad skin. I stopped eating gluten and avoided lactose for almost a year. I got very skinny and had no idea what was going on. Because I got so skinny, I stopped ovulating every month. I tried all sorts of herbs to regulate it again but nothing worked. A friend of mine recommended a TCM specialist. Because I charted, he was able to look at my chart and could see that my progesterone level was too low. (He mixed me herbs and gave me 2 facial creams which smelt really bad and told me to eat what I wanted and to go on holiday.)
After a month my skin got better, after two month my cycle went back to normal. I realised then the importance of collecting data about your own health. You can read so much from your chart. DaysyView, the accompanying smart phone app, is now my personal health tracker.»
How can you use Daysy as a diagnostic health tool?
«Daysy is your ‘body reporter‘ informing you on your health status.
You’ll see a temperature curve in your data on the app whenever changes occur. With DaysyView, prior to an appointment with a medical practitioner, you can share your chart, they can upload your data and they then have an overview of your menstrual cycle and its statistics. They then know when you had your last period, if you ovulate and when. Daysy is smart like that.
If you’re planning a child, this information is also very helpful. So many couples have issues becoming pregnant simply because of a too short luteal phase. How would you or your doctor know that without charting? Better awareness of your cycle and your body result in overall greater health and wellbeing.
Know your body, know yourself.»
What do you love most about your work?
«The women that use Daysy. I feel really honoured that we’ve been able to create an affective choice, a real solution for women who are concerned about the side-effects of hormonal birth control. I love to see when a woman who has had difficulties getting pregnant, starts using Daysy and gets pregnant.
Often we support them for months through our online communities and emails on their journey with Daysy. Once a week I still work on the customer service desk so I have direct contact to the customer, to see what they like, don‘t like or wish for. By having direct customer contact, its possible to make a great product which suits their needs. We’re a small, predominantly female team with really big hearts for our users (Daysies). It’s all about the Daysies.
We receive emails every week from women who have come off conventional hormonal contraception methods and start using Daysy and feel a real change in their body. They feel like themselves, because Daysy helps women to reconnect with their cycle, with their body and with their sexuality. I love that.»
Daysy is doing some incredible clinical studies too – why is this important to you and the brand?
«Daysy was the first of its kind in the market to combine a medical device with an App. Nowadays there are hundreds of period tracking Apps out there and yes, we have imitators when it comes to the device, but we continue to concentrate on what’s important: simplicity, quality, effectiveness and experience.
Now, since we know that Daysy is a diagnostic tool, we can commission studies on other reproductive issues which might be causing women concern. Pain is one of the most logged notes in our App, so why not work with professors and doctors together to figure out how to heal that? For us, collaborating with doctors and universities to understand women’s reproductive health and fertility is vital. We pride ourselves in knowing more so we can keep doing better.»
What plans do you have for the future with Daysy?
«We want to continuously improve Daysy, while staying faithful to the product and our mission. Our mission is to provide women with the knowledge and tools they need to accurately make informed and powerful choices about their menstrual cycle, their fertility and their body.
To make charting easy and accessible by using our technology, even those who know nothing about the Fertility Awareness Method. And to continue to listen to, and serve, our customers with an effective product they can trust. Our customer support always tries to go the extra step, because our customers are Queens!»