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St. Pete entrepreneur hopes to bring moms into the metaverse

Mark Parker

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Tu Hien Le, founder of BeauGen and Mamaverse, pitched her latest project to a panel of local business leaders at Wednesday's 1 Million Cups event. Screengrab.

Over the past several months, the continued creation and expansion of an online metaverse has dominated technology headlines and conversations; using some of the same technology, a St. Petersburg startup is creating an immersive online community for women from all stages of motherhood – the Mamaverse.

At Wednesday’s 1 Million Cups event, hosted by Thrive DTSP, founder Tu-Hien Le introduced the Mamaverse to a panel of local business leaders. No stranger to 1 Million Cups, Le participated in a 2015 event and pitched her first startup, BeauGen. She said BeauGen, which offers breastfeeding merchandise and online instructional courses, has since generated seven-figure revenue through 90,000 customers in 12 countries.

Le said throughout her journey working with new mothers she discovered the challenges of motherhood did not stop after breastfeeding.

“Which is why I’m here to build the ultimate self-care experience, called the Mamaverse,” she said.

Le said the concept is unique and based around a mobile app still in beta testing. The app offers self-care challenges encompassing mental, social and spiritual wellness. Users form teams with other mothers and then compete to earn rewards.

Like the metaverse, the Mamaverse is also built using blockchain technology and utilizes non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs).

“My vision is to step forward into the future with my audience,” she added.

The Mamaverse ecosystem combines the benefits of established digital communities with cutting-edge technology to create a unique experience. That includes mixing the social atmosphere of Facebook groups with the online competitions offered by Peloton exercise bikes.

Le said users unlock rewards through community-based competitions such as badges, digital merchandise from their favorite brands, or a virtual ticket to a Justin Bieber concert held in the metaverse. Le called the possibilities for the digital awards “endless.”

“I’m just taking assets of these existing technologies that have proven to be successful and bringing them into this … self-care experience for moms in the Mamaverse,” she said.

Le said challenges range in difficulty, from drinking a certain amount of water per day to completing 30 minutes of exercise or yoga. The company would depend on uploaded pictures or videos and the honor system as a verification method.

That might prove problematic, a panelist pointed out, when offering rewards.

As the app focuses on self-care, Le said if someone cheats the system, they are cheating themselves, and currently most of the rewards consist of simply earning badges. Another panelist noted that the team aspect would promote honesty.

“I think most users would try to get better for themselves,” said Le.

Le asked the panel for help spreading the word about her project. She currently has 90,000 contacts, and her goal is to reach 500,000 people, she said, to unlock the funding needed to advance the Mamaverse. She added that contacts for those working with blockchain technology and in the metaverse realm would help further propel her latest venture.

Through its website, interested users can join a waitlist for the Mamaverse until the app is out of beta testing.

“I’m not looking to invent anything new,” said Le. “I just happen to have an audience that I want to bring into the future with me, and I believe the future is going in the direction of the metaverse and NFTs.”

 

 

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