How to empower women in entrepreneurship

Boosting & connecting female investors for more diversity: That’s the goal of primeCROWD's Female Investors Network & ONE MISSION

Do you remember for how long we are already talking about this? Us neither! But yes, not much has changed unfortunately! Women are still very much underrepresented in management positions – and it's not getting better, but worse as a recent study by the Allbright Foundation noted just a couple of days ago! Germany has even taken a step backwards! In Germany 2020, more women were removed from board positions than in previous years so far and there are only 12.8% women in leading positions as of right now.

And the numbers of female founders are similarly low: only around 15% of the German startups have a diverse founder team, in other parts of the world like Silicon Valley or Israel the numbers are not any better. Studies such as the Female Founder Monitor have shown that one of the reasons for that is the “gender imbalance (...) in terms of funding, especially with regard to investments by VCs and business angels”. 56.7 percent of the female teams claim that they find it “(very) difficult” to get access to investors and their network, while only 36.7 percent of the male teams answered that way.

“We need more female investors if we want to reach equality in that aspect”, says Svenja Lassen, Managing Director of investors’ network primeCROWD. In order to empower women in the founder and investor cosmos by connecting them and providing a platform for exchange, Svenja started the Female Investors Network (FIN) in 2020. 

Thereby she wants to provide more transparency and contact points for female investors - and founders - for example by organizing networking events. Svenja is convinced that investing is like a new language - something everybody can learn. “I want to make a startup investment a real option for women, just like the investment in stocks or real estate”, she explains. “There are a lot of women who want to invest and have the money - but who just don’t have startups on their screen really.” 

And she’s not alone with that goal: Support comes from ONE MISSION, a new initiative for female empowerment started by 3 women out of the startup incubator and coworking space Werk1 in Munich in 2020. It has planned several concrete measures to boost female entrepreneurs and investors: Amongst them online networking and campaigns, meetups in schools and universities, a mentoring program, making female role models more visible and setting up child care options at Werk1. “Our goal is to create a more diverse and inclusive economy which in the long run will lead to better businesses”, stresses Marlene Eder, one of the initiators of ONE MISSION. And that means on the founder as well as on the investor side, she adds.