Be Girl exists to meet the gap in menstrual products, education, and positive messaging, especially in emerging markets where the need is greatest. In short, they work for a world where all girls can manage, understand, and love their bodies.
The company serves a wide range of users, some who pay for the product and some who do not, thanks to their partnerships with both commercial distributors and nonprofits.
The products solve challenges according to the diverse needs of users: for example, nonpaying users may face difficulty accessing any materials for menstruation, while paying users lack premium, sustainable, and affordable product options in the market. For all users, the company conducts period-positive messaging campaigns to rebrand menstruation as something to manage, understand, and love.
Situation: The company’s patented PeriodPanty™ is colorful, fashionable, and breathable high-performance menstrual underwear designed to keep users protected and comfortable all day. The panty is leak-proof and stain-resistant and has a universal pocket to accommodate either a reusable or disposable absorbent. The PeriodPanty™ gives users the power to customize individual menstrual protection to match cycle and flow. Their sales orders have exploded where more product was delivered in 2021 than all previous years combined.
Complication: The product is manufactured by global suppliers. It takes months from order to delivery by ship, the most efficient transportation mode. Air freight is faster but many times the cost. Therefore, Be Girl needs to finance containers of product from manufacture to delivery at their distribution facilities in Mozambique which is in East Africa.
Solution: Bertzman funded a working capital line of credit that enabled Be Girl to preorder product to meet the delivery expectations of their customers while maintaining the lowest landed cost.
Co-Founder and Co-CEO Diana Sierra shared how the company came into existence more than 8 years ago: “In 2013, I read a hand-written survey from a girl in Tanzania, one of our early product testers saying, ‘“What I liked most about these pads is that somebody, somewhere loves me because she made these beautiful pads for me, and I feel proud to be girl.’” That sparked the creation of a company that as of 2021 delivered more than 300,000 products into the hands of girls. And yet our mission is still the same: reach people with products that celebrate you, that make you feel loved.”
“When Bertzman started almost four years ago we were looking for opportunities to support United Nation Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) six – water, sanitation and hygiene for all. While there are many water-related opportunities, hygiene has eluded us until now,” commented Linda Heitzman cofounder of Bertzman.
“We are thrilled to lend support to the inspirational work Be Girl is doing for school age girls to increase their self-confidence and pride.”
Related Topics: Financing for WASH, Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), UN Sustainable Development Goal 6, Hygiene, Bertzman Social Ventures News, Social Entrepreneurship, Social Impact Causes, Social Impact Investing