Over 200 genetic testing startups have sprung up in China the past few years, including 23mofang, WeGene and Somur. And VC firms are chomping at the bit to get in on the action. In 2016, 95% of Chinese genomic startups received more than RMB 10 million in financing each.
However, in order to exploit fully the potential of the market, these startups have some significant obstacles to surmount.
For the majority of Chinese consumers, DTC genetic testing is still a technological novelty. Since the results are not accepted by hospitals for use in diagnosis and treatment, many consumers just get tested for fun. “[Many of] our customers are interested in their ethnic roots,” said 23mofang founder and CEO