In a very short amount of time, the millennial-focused erectile dysfunction startup, Hims, has shot to the forefront of ED and hair growth medication.
But, with great success comes a little competitive edging from the big boys, and now something truly bizarre is going on.
Yesterday, Quartz reported that Pfizer, the company that makes Viagra, pitched a tent on Hims’ turf and purchased the domain name for hims.com before the fledgling company could get to it.
BUT, as of around 5pm last night, the Hims’ domain name curiously redirected to menshealth.com, pushing the claims of Pfizer’s jab into unfounded territory. THEN, as of 7:30a this morning, hims.com now redirects us to Google’s home page.
It’s unclear what is happening, or who is responsible, but it is fair to say that our brains hurt.
Either way, it makes sense for Pfizer to have performance anxiety
For 20 years, Viagra has been the flagship ED treatment in big pharma, with Pfizer’s little blue pill bringing tens of billions of dollars in revenue since its launch in 1998.
But soon, Pfizer’s patent on Viagra is set to expire, giving companies like Hims free rein to sell the generic version of Sildenafil — the drug used to treat ED — for a much cheaper price.
Now, men of all ages are coming out of the woodwork, and Pfizer is feeling a little impotent.
Less than a year in, Hims is already valued at $200m
Hims raised $40m in March (conveniently, the same month that Pfizer bought their domain name), giving the company a sizeable valuation at breakneck speed.
The 25-person company has raised close to $100m to date and, as of March, sold around $10m worth of products for baldness and ED.
Aside from the cheaper price, a big contributor to Hims’ success is the company’s focus on telehealth, as they plan to make it easier for men to address their uncomfortable health needs via chat or phone.