Around one-fourth of the startups in Y Combinator’s summer batch has had a female founder.
It is not the most disappointing statistic if you would consider that companies who have at least one female founder have been able to raise only about 11% of venture capital funding in the U.S.
In 2019, according to PitchBook, companies with female founders particularly have just raised 3%.
There is definitely a need for improvement.
Who Is Ready, Set, Raise?
To close this funding gap, customized programs are made for female entrepreneurs who are working tirelessly to mentor and develop startups in the hopes of impressing venture capitalists.
Ready, Set, Raise, an accelerator program created for women, by women, is one of the new efforts to help female and non-binary founders raise more dollars, or, at least, build relationships with the investors.
The program was developed by a Seattle based network of startup founders and investors called the Female Founders Alliance.
The Foundation of Female Founders Alliance
It is a group that includes an AI-powered tool for podcasters and a line of workwear designed for women who work on the farms, construction sites, and factory floors.
FFA’s founder and CEO Leslie Feinzaig, who started the organization in 2017, started a Facebook group, which included all the founders and tech startup leaders she knew.
It was the group that she needed, which was made up of people who knew exactly what she was going through.
And that’s how the Female Founders Alliance came into existence.
Microsoft & FFA Team Up
Ian Bergman, the managing director of Microsoft for Startups said in a statement, that both FFA and Microsoft identify a major lapse in opportunities given to women and non-binary founders.
They also look forward to continuing to work together to promote this important shift in the VC landscape.
They will be providing its companies supervision during the six-week program, in where companies will work one-on-one with experienced coaches ahead of a demo day that will take place on October 16th, 2019.
Following is a look at Ready, Set, Raise’s sophomore class of startups:
- Echo Echo: An AI-powered tool for podcasters.
- Give InKind: Manages support through major life events.
- Honistly: A supplier of extended auto warranties to help with short-term cash requirements.
- Panty Drop: A customized intimates shopping experience for women sizes from XS-6XL.
- The Labz: A platform that secures and remembers creative content development in real-time.
- Tougher: A well-fitted workwear for women who are in skilled trades.
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