Ruby Cup Business Model
Making menstrual products accessible to all
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Ruby Cup’s primary social impact goal revolves around promoting menstrual health and hygiene. As a matter of fact, thanks to their reliable and comfortable menstrual hygiene solutions, Ruby Cup aims to breaking the barriers associated with menstruation. By placing a significant emphasis on education and awareness, the company also engages in both online and offline campaigns to promote understanding and destigmatize menstruation. Thanks to their business model, the organization is able to reach its impact goal not only in more privileged countries, but in underserved communities too.
Other than that, promoting reusable, sustainable menstrual cups helps reduce the reliance on disposable products such as pads and tampons. By encouraging the adoption of sustainable practices, Ruby Cup contributes thus to minimizing the environmental impact of menstrual waste, aligning with broader goals of ecological responsibility.
Customers & Beneficiaries
When it comes to customers, the primary target of Ruby Cup social business model surely are eco-conscious women, girls and individuals who menstruate and who seek to purchase sustainable, cost-effective, and comfortable menstrual products. Although the consumer base is distributed globally, most customers are located in Europe as well as India.
On the other side of the spectrum, the main non-paying beneficiaries are individuals in underserved communities. Through their “buy one, donate one” model and partnerships with local NGOs, Ruby Cup makes menstrual cups accessible to those dealing with financial barriers to accessing menstrual hygiene products. Main target areas include East Africa (in countries such as Kenya, Uganda and Malawi), Asia (Nepal) and fragile communities in Western and Northern Europe
Value Proposition (Customers & Beneficiaries)
For both customers and beneficiaries, the core intervention doesn’t change: menstrual hygiene solutions, more specifically menstrual cups. But what’s the true value behind them?
On one hand, the driving values for eco-conscious are environmental sustainability, reusability, cost-effectiveness and obviously comfortability. On the other one, for beneficiaries Ruby Cup represents a way to improve menstrual hygiene management, customers, reduce economic burden and finally access menstrual health education.
Key Activities + Channels
Among the core activities of the company, we can surely identify the following ones: product development, manufacturing, distribution and sales, and finally educational campaigns.
To begin with, Ruby Cup engages in continuous research and development activities to enhance the design and functionality of its end products, the menstrual cups. This includes improving materials, shape, and features to ensure optimal comfort, ease of use, and effectiveness for users. Secondly, the manufacturing process, externalized and based in China, ensures top-quality menstrual products during the production phase. Finally, by managing an efficient supply chain and distributors network the company reaches its global consumer base.
Apart from the core business, another core activity involves educational campaigns, which are complementary to the menstrual cup itself. In fact, Ruby Cup runs both online and offline workshops and programs where participants learn not only how to use their new cups, but also about menstrual care and reproductive health.
Based on the above, we can deduce that the main channels for the organization include its proprietary e-commerce, online sales channels such as Amazon or Your Best Period, as well as local, offline resellers.
Key Resources + Key Partners & Stakeholders
Just like for most impact-making organizations, at the core of Ruby Cup social business model there is a team of skilled professionals across various domains, including design, marketing, education and customer support. Apart from the staff, the raw materials required for the production of the cups, especially the medical-grade silicone, are key for ensuring high-quality manufacturing. Lastly, brand reputation became increasingly important for the company to establish itself as a worldwide-recognized leader in the menstrual hygiene and health industry.
As for partnerships, we can rightfully assume that the main ones are represented by:
- the Chinese manufacturer, taking care of the whole production phase;
- the NGOs such as Golden Girls Foundation and Welthungerhilfe, just to name a few, helping Ruby Cup run its donation programs in different regions of Africa, Asia and Europe.
Cost Structure + Revenue Engines + Surplus
Coming to a conclusion and based on the previous sections, it is clear that the main costs for Ruby Cup include staff, manufacturing, R&D, as well as marketing and distribution costs (i.e. packaging, distribution fees, etc.). As for revenues, instead, the company generates most of its income streams by selling, either directly or indirectly, the menstrual cups and underwear. Such revenues, together with occasional grants and private donations, enables Ruby Cup to constantly run its “buy one, give one” programs, reinvesting its profits to give menstrual products for free to fragile communities.
Ruby Cup social business model stands as a beacon of innovation and impact in the realm of menstrual hygiene. As a matter of fact, the company is hardly committed to sustainability, social responsibility, and empowerment of vulnerable communities.
As a matter of fact, by offering reusable menstrual cups, Ruby Cup provides eco-conscious customers with a sustainable, cost-effective, and comfortable alternative to traditional disposable pods and tampons. Thanks to its “buy one, donate one” program, the company is also able to reach individuals in unprivileged communities and help them access menstrual health and education.
In conclusion, by breaking the stigmas around menstruation and addressing the cultural, economic, and environmental dimensions of menstrual health, Ruby Cup truly creates a holistic solution that resonates with a diverse global audience.
About the Author
I’m Marco, an Italian business practitioner with previous study and work experiences across Australia, Netherlands, Spain and Vietnam. Having a background in economics and business management, since 2018 I’m happy to support social entrepreneurs and impact startuppers refine their businesses and scale social impact.
At Social Business Design, I mostly write about business design, financial modeling and growth hacking, sharing useful tools and insights gathered during 5+ years of on-field experiences.
Apart from talking about social business, I love hiking, reading, eating Asian food and taking pictures while I’m traveling. If interested, feel free to get in touch with me through my channels! 🙂
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