Women Startup Challenge Selects 30 Semifinalists; More Than $315,000 Raised for Women-led Startups

Women Startup Challenge Selects 30 Semifinalists; More Than $315,000 Raised for Women-led Startups

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2015

WASHINGTON – The Women Startup Challenge, a first-of-its-kind crowdfunding and pitch competition organized to generate financial support for women-led tech startups, announced the results of its initial round with 30 ventures selected to advance to the semifinal round.

The qualifying startups were the 30 which raised the most money during the first round of the Challenge, which ran from April 29 to May 29. Every Challenge participant used the crowdfunding platform CrowdRise, and in total more than $315,000 was raised by participating ventures. A panel of judges from the tech and investment communities will examine the 30 semifinal entries and invite the 10 most promising ventures to deliver a live pitch directly to investors in Washington, DC at General Assembly on June 30.

Prizes will include $50,000 in cash, as well as other startup services such as a one-on-one consultation with a partner from 500 Startups, pro-bono legal services, etc.

The qualifying semifinalists include: PeerSpring; GeoHealth.us; Actionplanr; LatherUp.co; Echo Media Mobile S.P.C.; LGBTQutie Mobile App; MamaMilk Express; Fam-ess; spring design & art; MYOLO: Mortgage Applications Made Easy; Hookist; Kicker; 2025 Labs; Virtue.Us; upace; Mina's List; suitecx; Zidisha: P2P Microlending Without Borders; Pawprint: Electronic Health Records for Pets; Shenami, BLLC; BAKERpedia; Primary Book Club; Amplify Loud; Pop-Post; On Second Thought; Keasy; Animal Rescue Partner; Vijilent; VocationNinja; and Center for Technology and Civic Life.

The Women Startup Challenge is organized and sponsored by Women Who Tech along with an array of startup-investment related leaders and companies including Joanne and Fred Wilson, and craigslist and craigconnects founder Craig Newmark.

“Only 7 percent of investor money goes to women-led startups, despite the fact women-led tech companies have a 35 percent higher ROI and generate 12 percent higher revenue. Our goal with the Women Startup Challenge is to promote close to 100 women-led startups and help fund them,” said Allyson Kapin, Women Who Tech founder and chief executive. “With this challenge, unlike a traditional startup pitch competition where the best startup wins the entire pot of money, every participating women-led startup walks away with money for their venture.”

"Helping people build businesses should be about investing in women the same as men. That's only fair, and it’s how we’ll find the best startups with the potential to change the world," said Newmark, who sits on the Women Who Tech advisory board.

Women Who Tech also produced an infographic that highlights the latest data about women-led startups at http://www.womenwhotech.com/startupinfographic.

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