by Ben Davis
In the first moments of connecting with Jennifer Stojkovic, founder of Vegan Women Summit (VWS), I was faced with a mind-boggling statistic: only 3% of global capital investments go towards female entrepreneurs, and only a measly 1% go towards women of color.
In an effort to not get hung up on this one startling statistic, let’s look to the opportunities and solutions. We cannot change the past, but the future is ours to create. This clear gap in funding going towards women, and particularly women of color, is a massive opportunity for investors of all shapes and sizes.
The Female Founder Report – a recent survey conducted by VWS – is packed with useful information, both statistical and anecdotal. It touches on gender and racial bias, harassment issues, the effect of the pandemic on raising capital… it’s worth a read in its entirety.
It goes on to report that 59% of founders surveyed are aiming to raise at least $1 million dollars in investment and 12% of founders are aiming to raise $10 million dollars or more.
There is a clear opportunity here for investors, and the aspect of the report that demonstrates a method for tapping into that opportunity is depicted in this particular graph:
This study shows the impact of the focus of an investment firm on the support that the founders received from their investors, and of the understanding investors had in those products. When female founders receive investment from firms that specifically focus on female founders and founders of color, the positive feedback showed significant increase.
This demonstrates a clear relationship between intention and success in business. When investors make it their goal to support the types of founders that have traditionally been underserved, they create an intentional space for those founders to succeed. The result ushers in much needed balance and equity to the industry, while increasing the bottom line of the investor in the process. That’s a WIN-WIN we can all get behind!
If you haven’t heard yet – VWS is launching the first ever Pathfinder: Female Founder Summit and Pitch Competition. Registration and applications for the pitch contest are now open.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks as we showcase the stories of the game-changing founders set to participate in this groundbreaking event.