A recent Catalyst Capital event at Aquillius brought together four women at the forefront of angel and VC investing: Priscilla Luckhurst, Rose Vitale, Jenny Lo, and Zeynep Ilgaz. They shared their experiences and insights as women in the investing and entrepreneurship space, such as Priscilla's advice she once received from a mentor "Do it scared.”
These discussions highlighted the importance of having more women at the table in investing and entrepreneurship. Currently, women are underrepresented in these fields, with only 2% of venture capital funding going to female-founded businesses.1 However, women-led businesses are just as successful as male-led businesses.
There are a number of reasons why women are underrepresented in investing. One reason is that they are often perceived to be less confident in their investing abilities than men. They may also be less likely to have access to the same networks and resources as male investors. Additionally, the investing world can be a hostile environment for women, who may face discrimination and harassment from male investors.
Despite these challenges, there are a number of women who are making a difference in the investing world such as our panelist. These women are investing in female-led businesses, mentoring other women, and advocating for change.
There are also many benefits to having more women in investing and entrepreneurship. First, private tech companies led by women achieve 35% higher ROI.2 That’s a significantly better return and a good reason for any investor to add more women-led companies to their investment portfolio.
Second, women investors bring a different perspective to the table. They are more likely to invest in businesses that are focused on social impact or that are led by diverse teams. This can lead to more innovative and sustainable businesses which means a stronger and more effective economy.
Third, increasing the number of women in investing will help to close the gender gap in wealth. Currently, women hold only 33% of the wealth in the United States.3 By increasing the number of women investors, we can help to close this gap and create a more equitable economy.
There are a number of things that can be done to encourage more women to invest. First, we need to provide more opportunities for women to learn about investing. Luckily there are several organizations that offer investing education specifically for women, such as Girls Who Invest and Women Investing.
Second, we need to create more networks and resources for women investors. A few currently available online and offline communities for women investors are the Female Founders Fund and Women in VC.
Third, we need to promote positive role models for women in investing. There are a number of successful women investors who can serve as role models. This article was inspired by a panel of four of them, Priscilla Luckhurst, Rose Vitale, Jenny Lo, and Zeynep Ilgaz!
Finally, we need to challenge the stereotypes about women and investing. There are a number of stereotypes about women and investing, such as the idea that women are not good at math or that they are not risk-takers. These stereotypes need to be challenged directly in order to encourage more women to invest.
By taking these steps, we can create a more equitable and prosperous economy by having more women at the table in investing.
Here are some of the resources available to women who are interested in investing and entrepreneurship:
Stella.co: Stella connects women founders and investors to the right resource–at the right time–in their journeys.
Hera Hub: Hera Hub is a female-focused coworking space and business accelerator founded in San Diego, California, United States.
AngelList: A website that connects investors with startups.
Women Presidents' Organization: An organization for women entrepreneurs.
By investing in women-owned businesses and companies with women in leadership positions, we can all make a difference in the world. We can help to create a more equitable and prosperous economy, and we can help to create a more innovative and sustainable world!