Lora DiCarlo, the sexual wellness startup at the center of a trade show dustup in 2019, has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise more money to make its microrobotic pleasure devices according to Venturebeat.
The Bend, Oregon-based company’s crowdfunding offering is on Republic, where it can raise $25,000 to $5 million. As of this morning, the female-founded company has already raised more than $60,000.
Lora DiCarlo started in 2017 with their premier pleasure device developed in partnership with Oregon State University’s Robotics & Engineering Lab. The company later won a coveted robotics innovation award from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) at CES 2019 that was later rescinded. After the company was effectively banned by CTA, an industry-wide conversation about gender equity in tech and the value of self-pleasure devices led to the CTA updating it’s policy to make the CES more “welcoming and inclusive.”
When CES changed its policy, sex toy makers like Lora DiCarlo, OhMiBod, and Lioness were allowed to exhibit at CES 2020.
During the past several years, Lora DiCarlo has designed 11 products based on its microrobotic engine.
“Our engineering team has gone from a rickety car to a very well oiled machine in the last few years,” says Lora Haddock, the CEO and founder of Lora DiCarlo, in an interview with VentureBeat. “Now we can dump ideas into this hopper and quickly synthesize them in a productive manner. We listen to the problems that people say they have, and we try to solve them.”
The company boasts investors like actress Cara Delevingne, Romulus Capital, VU Fund, and Gaingels. Republic is a SEC-registered investment platform for investors seeking high growth investment returns in highly-vetted startups.
“We really feel like it’s an amazing opportunity,” Haddock says. “There are not a lot of ways to invest in sexual health and wellness. So we want to better everyone’s sex lives and what better way to be able to do that and then to allow everybody to participate. We’ve taken an inclusive and transparent approach.”
Allied Market Research estimated the sex tech market at $74 billion.