From Eventbrite‘s co-founder Julia Hartz, to Kim Rees of Periscopic, to Robin Chase of Zipcar, women have founded some of the most successful startups. More and more investors are recognizing what women can bring to the table: as Techcrunch reports, the number of female-led startups almost doubled between 2009 and 2014. Still, the startup world remains overwhelmingly male. While reasons for this are complex, as Kay Koplovitz told Inc.com, “When you provide women with resources and a startup ecosystem that supports them, their businesses thrive.”
These initiatives provide support, resources, and community that empower women to thrive as founders and entrepreneurs.
1. Women Who Startup
There’s strength in numbers, and Denver-based Women Who Startup aims to bring women coders, founders, and entrepreneurs together through networking events and summits. Also, their Women Who Startup podcast lets entrepreneurs around the world participate in the conversation.
2. The Women’s Venture Fund
The Women’s Venture Fund is a New York and New Jersey-based organization that offers training programs, one-on-one advisory services, and business loans to women entrepreneurs. Their goal is to make information and resources available so that their clients’ businesses can succeed.
3. Women’s Tech Radio
A podcast produced by Jupiter Broadcasting, Women’s Tech Radio hosts conversations between women who work in all areas of the tech world–from coders, developers, and engineers to founders and entrepreneurs. If you’re looking for community and role models, this is a great place to turn.
4. In Good Company
In Good Company is a New York-based co-working space that also offers much, much more: networking sessions, group "get S$% done" sessions, classes, and peer mentorship opportunities for women entrepreneurs. Beyond simply providing resources for women, In Good Company aims to help women empower themselves to succeed in business. Their blog offers refreshing advice on topics from dealing with sexism to figuring out how to take maternity leave as an entrepreneur.
5. 37 Angels
37 Angels addresses the untapped potential that women can bring to investing, with the goal of achieving gender equality in angel investing. The vast majority of investors are men, and 37Angels thinks that including more women in the process can result in greater innovation. Their mentorship network works with women who want to become investors, and their investor training bootcamp empowers women investors with knowledge and resources.
San Francisco-based Astia identifies and promotes high-potential women-run ventures, providing networking opportunities, mentorship, and, crucially, access to investors and capital. By involving entrepreneurs, advisors, and investors, they’re working to change the startup ecosystem.
While the startup world can still be a challenging place for women, there’s no reason that it needs to stay that way, and these groups are changing it for women at all levels of entrepreneurship.