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Contxto – According to an infographic published by WomenWhoTech, “86 percent of venture-funded businesses have zero women in management positions.” If this stat doesn’t make you cringe, I don’t know what will.
One way to have more female leadership is not necessarily to wait for other companies to get their act together, but to give women the means to start and run companies themselves.
For this reason, WeXchange, an initiative led by the Inter-American Development Bank’s innovation lab, is launching its eighth edition.
Women STEMpreneurs, as it’s called, aims to empower and connect women entrepreneurs in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) with potential investors and mentors.
According to an IDB Lab’s press release, this chapter will include an extended version of its pitch competition, which rewards the most innovative products and pitches with potential access to financing.
Furthermore, the IDB Lab has already been supporting female STEM founders across the region for eight years already. Tomás Lopes-Texeira, CIO at IDB Lab suggests that today’s literature supports the premise that “investing in companies led by women is not only a matter of inclusion and impact but also profitability.”
Indeed there is evidence.
Female founders and funders aplenty
So, what’s the event all about? Attendees will be able to join workshops, conferences, as well as network with fellow entrepreneurs and potential investors.
VC fund, Angel Ventures, along with We-Fi (Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative) will join the event as organizing partners.
Nevertheless, other funds will also be part of the event. In fact, the competition will serve to evaluate and filter startups that have at least one woman in the founding team, but factors such as a solid technological base, as well as scalability and sustainable impact are important criteria, too.
Now, comparing startups can be a challenging endeavor. Especially, considering the high degree of variability within stages, industries, and technologies. For that reason, companies will be categorized mainly based on stage.
Whether seed stage, pre-Series A or Series A/B, these finalists will be able to compete for the US$1 million final prize, or fast-track their application process for 500 Startups LatAm’s acceleration program.
Other funds such as ALLVP, Carao Ventures, Cometa, Dila Capital, Magma Partners, Maya Capital, NXTP Ventures, as well as Redpoint eventures and Vulcano will also be present and evaluating investment opportunities within these startups.
Not surprisingly, the event will be held online this time from November 10 to 12. The submission deadline for startups is 23 of August. So, do not hesitate and jump straight onboard!