To Bridge the Gap Between Investment and Female Founders – Scroll to the bottom to Sign
The Charter reflects our aspiration to see gender balanced investment from VCs & Angel investors at all levels across startups from early stage to Series A. Will you sign it in support of the need to see more female founders funded?
If the UK achieved the same average share of women entrepreneurs as best-in-class peer countries £200Billion would be added to the UK Economy. To help more female founders succeed right now has never been more critical. – Rose Report
Female founders are good for business, they’re good for investors, customers, for profitability and workplace cultures, including achieving better balanced workforces.
With only 32% of entrepreneurs in the UK being a woman, we see an untapped economic potential for growth that could add 1.1mn new businesses to the UK.
[bctt tweet=”I’ve signed The Charter which reflects my aspiration to see gender balanced investment from VCs & Angel investors at all levels across startups from early stage to Series A. Will you sign it in support of female founders?”]The 200BnClub funding initiative commits to supporting the progression of women led UK based startups from early stage to Series A to intelligently decrease the gender gap prevalent in the investment landscape by initially targeting Stage 1 (Deal Flow) and Stage 2 (Pitch) of the investment process.
The initiative is targeted towards female founders or co-founders who own significant founder equity (not options) in the business. We conduct thorough due diligence and we discourage participation from teams that are attempting to use female team members as a tick box exercise. Diversity without inclusion is ineffective.
Much needed role models
As well as getting investment to female founders, we need to shine a light on the female founders who are already succeeding to:
- Act as role models for other women to become founders and secure investment.
- Normalise the idea of women running successful businesses and receiving funding from VCs and Angel investors.
The more traditional VCs see and hear of the successes of women led companies, the more likely they will be to want to invest in women led businesses.
Updating the Pitch process
We help remove the bias in the pitch process by preparing women face and redirect prevention questions asked by VCs (male or female) towards highlighting their strengths in delivering success.
This type of questioning, mostly directed at women, significantly reduces the likelihood of investment and the amount of investment by 5 times, therefore it is vital that female business owners are prepared not only to cope, but change the narrative of a consciously or unconsciously biased pitch.
We create a more balanced discourse around investment that matches the most compatible investor to the founder: someone who believes in the company’s vision and profitability.
Building the ecosystem
Data shows that approaching a VC through one’s network is of utmost importance as 82% of startups receiving investments have received a “warm” introduction and are 13 times more likely to reach the Investment committee.
With All-female and mixed gender team less likely to have a warm introduction than all-male team, we aim to level the playing field through introducing our cohort to the various VC and Angel investors in our network.
Additionally, venture capital firms with female investment partners are four times more likely to invest in female CEOs (Dubow & Pruitt, 2017). There has been significant improvement of women regarding representation in junior-level roles, we need to see this continue into senior roles.
[bctt tweet=”Data shows that approaching a VC through one’s network is of utmost importance as 82% of startups receiving investments have received a “warm” introduction and are 13 times more likely to reach the Investment committee.”]
Why is this Charter needed?
Despite various studies demonstrating:
- Female led companies generate twice as much as male-led companies (Source: BCG Group)
- Businesses with female founders have higher annual valuation increases (Source: International Finance Corporation)
- Businesses with females in senior positions are 25% more likely to outperform on profitability than those without women (Source: McKinsey)
- Creating an environment where women start and scale businesses at the same rate as men could add nearly £250bn to the UK economy (Source: Barclays)
The funding stats globally and in the UK remain woeful.
Globally women receive less than 3% of all VC funding, and the 2017 British Business Bank study showed that all UK female led teams received less than 1% of all VC funding, with mixed teams receiving just 11% of all VC funding.
We’ve seen a set back for women in 2020 as they have been more adversely affected by COVID as they take on the bulk of the care and home schooling responsibilities, and are more likely to work in or run businesses that have been negatively impacted by COVID and lockdown measures.
Additionally, while VCs invested record breaking sums in 2020 they did so in fewer ventures, resulting in less funding going to female founders.
Signing this Charter pledges your support to see more female founders funded and your recognition that this is an important and much needed economic as well as social change.
When you sign this Charter you’ll receive a badge you can share on your website, across social media, add to your email signature to make your pledge public and raise visibility of this issue and the need for change.
We, and all female founders, thank you in advance and please do share now with your network.
Target: 2000 Signatures Received: 170
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Reasons for signing
Total Signatures: 170