During my tenure at M12, I’ve been consistently inspired by all the incredible female founders I’ve been privileged to meet and, in turn, frustrated when I hear the industry misconception that there aren’t enough women starting enterprise tech companies. I’ve worked alongside them, invested in them; yet the data didn’t seem to exist, publicly or across my network of investors.
When I shared my concerns with Nagraj Kashyap, global head of M12, and Peggy Johnson, executive vice president of business development, we knew that something had to be done, not just to raise awareness of the number of women in enterprise tech, but also to address the broader funding disparity across the VC space. For two years in a row now, only 2 percent of VC funding has gone to female founders.
That’s why this past summer, M12 partnered with two organizations that have diversity and inclusion at the forefront of their values, EQT Ventures and SVB Financial Group, to kick off the Female Founders Competition, a global search to find and fund innovative female-founded startups bringing value to enterprises.