Only around 2% of venture capital goes to women, an even smaller fraction goes to women of color, and now some top women in business want to do something about this.
Global sports ICON Serena Williams has signed on as an investor in the Bumble Fund, established by Bumble, the dating, friend-finding and business networking app established in 2014. The Bumble Fund was created in 2018 to support early-stage businesses founded and led by women of color and underrepresented groups. The fund’s commitments range between $5,000 and $250,000, with an average check size of $25,000. Williams created her own fund, Serena Ventures, in 2014 and has made 30 investments to date.
Why We Need More Women in Business
1. Women Business Owners Lead Differently.
Women leaders drive collaboration and cooperation and help their employees grow.
2. Women Bargain & Negotiate With the Best of Them.
Female business leaders can achieve agreements and make deals where men might fall short.
3. Women Empower Other Women.
There is much research on the gender pay gap—but when it comes to business there is a lack of access to capital, and there’s also a gender opportunity gap. The fact that less that 2% of venture funds have gone to women owned businesses highlights the opportunity gap. Women leaders must lead the way to change which ideas get investment.
4. Women Are Coaching Leaders.
Women know the power of mentorship and sponsorship. Bumble’s mission is about women’s empowerment, and creating this Venture Fund for women businesses is providing business support though investment. Women investors are often willing to take risks on good ideas that are outside of the box.
The Contest Details
The Bumble Fund is running a competition this week on Bumble Bizz to fund women of color in business. The pitch contest is open to U.S.-based entrepreneurs with a scalable business. You are free to enter If you identify as women, with a priority given to founders from diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives. Companies have until March 27, 2019 to submit. You must have a Bumble Bizz profile to have a chance to pitch your business.
If you enter before March 27th, you could be selected for a chance to pitch your business in person to Serena Williams and Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd. The Bumble Fund has made nine investments to date.
Wolfe Herd explain why she launched the Bumble Fund. “When we launched our #InHerCourt campaign with Serena Williams this past January, we were amazed by the overwhelming response we received from women globally who felt empowered by our message,” said Wolfe Herd. “In teaming up with Williams for the Bumble Fund, we want women everywhere to know that we are here, we are listening and we believe in you. We are giving women more keys to success, while encouraging them to push their ideas forward and keep thinking big when it comes to their business ventures.”
The pitch competition gives the opportunity for women business owners of color to be seen by investors and mentors, such as Williams, that they otherwise would not have access to. Act now – March 27th will be here before you know it! Download the Bumble app and establish a profile on Bumble Bizz today to enter.
Since its launch in 2014, Bumble has grown to become one of the most relevant social networks worldwide. Today, Bumble, the “female first” app with over 26 million users, connects people across dating, friendship, and professional networking. No matter the type of relationship, women make the first move on Bumble. Bumble recognizes the importance of relationships and how crucial they are to a healthy, happy life. They’ve built their platform around kindness, respect, and equality – and their users play an important part in that. Bumble holds its users accountable for their actions and has zero tolerance for hate, aggression, or bullying. Bumble is available in 144 countries. Since 2014, Bumble has facilitated over 440 million women-led first moves and over four billion messages sent. Bumble is free and available in the App Store and Google Play.
Note: Melinda Emerson, publisher of www.succeedasyourownboss.com was compensated to promote this contest.
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