Women Startup Challenge Europe Finalists Announced; Aim to Close the Funding Gap for Women
Women Who Tech, one of the largest organizations that showcases and funds women-led ventures globally, announced the 10 finalists for its Women Startup Challenge Europe. Hundreds of women-led startups from 35 countries competed to pitch top investors and tech leaders, including Mitchell Baker, Chairwoman and Cofounder of Mozilla, Jean-Louis Missika, Deputy Mayor of Paris, Fatou Diagne, Partner and Cofounder at Bootstrap Europe, Julien Quintard, Managing Director of Techstars Paris, Alejandro Tauber, Editor-In-Chief of The Next Web (TNW), and Stéphanie Hospital, Cofounder and CEO of OneRagtime for financial funding. The Women Startup Challenge Europe event, co-hosted by the Office of Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, will be held on October 25, 2018 at Paris City Hall, Hôtel de Ville.
“We’ve seen a rise in the number of women-led startups across Europe, yet the latest data shows that only 10 percent of investor funding in the EU goes to women-led ventures,” said Allyson Kapin, Founder of Women Who Tech, based in Washington, D.C. “If investors want to generate venture returns they need to invest in diverse-led companies that are unlocking innovation through diverse perspectives. We’ve built a pipeline of over 2,000 women-led startups to provide investors with direct access to the best early-stage women-led startups.”
“Data shows that women CEOs in the Fortune 1000 drove 3 times the returns compared to S&P 500 enterprises run predominantly by men,” said Craig Newmark, Advisor to Women Who Tech and the Founder of craigslist and Craig Newmark Philanthropies. “We’ve got to invest in diverse perspectives and close this gap.”
A total of $60,000 in cash grants will be awarded to the winning startup(s). A $25,000 cash grant will be awarded by Mozilla to the startup whose product best incorporates privacy and transparency.
“European technical and business ecosystems are missing opportunities for growth, innovation and new business by systematically not funding women entrepreneurs,” said Mitchell Baker. “This year’s Women Startup Challenge proves that we can only become richer as a society by making sure that women have equal footing with men at this and every stage of their business journeys.”
Women Startup Challenge Europe Finalists Include:
- DEKO EKO (Poland) – An upcycling platform that works with the best designers globally to create well-designed consumer products out of carefully selected waste materials from the largest companies and brands.
- Enterprise Bot (Switzerland) – Develops AI powered chatbots to automate customer interactions and provide enterprises with a readily accessible digital agent to improve customer experience and create operational efficiency for companies.
- INOREVIA (France) – Develops and commercializes a new generation of patented technologies that miniaturize lab instrument volumes for analysis. This technology drastically reduces costs, time and manipulation necessary to perform next-generation bioassays and precision medicine.
- NOVA (Germany) – The first bluetooth headset that can be integrated into earrings with a built-in speaker and microphone.
- ObjectBox (Germany) – The first high-performance NoSQL, ACID-compliant on-device database for mobile and IoT. It’s 10x faster than the industry leader and takes only 1/10th of the code to implement.
- Sampson Solutions, Ltd. (England) – Creating bio-based construction materials from sustainable sources using a closed-loop, carbon neutral manufacturing process.
- SonicJobs (England) – The first virtual recruiter for blue-collar recruitment that uses chatbots combined with occupational psychology and AI, which screen and select the right job candidates in real time.
- TRIK (England) – A Google map for structural inspection that turns photos from drones into digital 3D models. Users can make comments, take measurements, and compare changes directly from the time-lapse 3D models.
- Vitrue Health (England) – A system that sits in the background of clinical assessments, autonomously measuring motor function metrics, freeing clinicians to focus on more complex patient interactions, saving millions in healthcare costs.
- Vouchery.io (Germany) – A predictive coupon, discount, and loyalty automation platform that optimizes promotional strategy for customer engagement while preventing coupon fraud.