Women Entrepreneurs Fund

Photo credit to Sphaera

You’ve got a great business plan ready to go.

You know your customers, market, and how to put your plan into action.

Now you just need a little help getting it off the ground.

No worries: The World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund and other options here are the perfect starting point to get the financial wheels turning.

The World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund and 10 Other Financing Opportunities for Women

Most of these funding opportunities were founded by women for women. This means you can avoid the traditional old man attitude associated with traditional venture capital firms. Bonus: a few foci on women of color.

1.    The World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund

The World Bank launched this program after realizing that women only make up 30 percent of formal small and medium enterprises.

This program focuses on giving women in developing countries access to financing, markets, and other tools to succeed in business.

2.    Female Founders Fund

The name here is pretty self-explanatory. Anu Duggal launched the Female Founders Fund in 2014. Since then, these lovely ladies have raised over $400 million in capital for women-led businesses.

You might already be familiar with some of their most popular investments such as Thrive Global, Zola, Maven, and Rent the Runway. This fund focuses on high-intensity industries like e-commerce.

Female Founders Fund

Photo credit to Twitter

3.    Forerunner Ventures

You probably know this venture capital firm through its successful investments like Birchbox, Dollar Shave Club, and Warby Parker.

This venture capital firm doesn’t exclusively fund women, but it’s lead by a woman and strives for inclusivity in the world of capital enterprise. Kristen Green began Forerunner Ventures with the goal of seeing more women business founders.

4.    The Plum Fund aka. Plumfund

The Plum Fund is otherwise known as Plumfund. This isn’t like other venture capital firms on the list. This one involves crowdfunding to get the money you need for all kinds of projects.

Founders of the Plum Fund appeared on Shark Tank to pitch their idea to the big-name venture capitalists – with success. Now, you can use this absolutely free platform to seek funding for whatever project you imagine.

5.    XFactor Ventures

This venture capital firm isn’t exclusively for lady entrepreneurs, but they have big plans to invest in women. How big? XFactor Ventures plans to invest $3 million into 30 women-founded enterprises.

Nine female founders run the Silicon Valley team at XFactor who provide capital for pre-seed and seed stages of projects. This investment will take place over the course of a few years so now is the time to check them out.

XFactor Ventures

Photo credit to Twitter

6.    Valor Ventures

If you’ve got a software company you’re trying to get off the ground, Valor Ventures is the place to go. Despite making up half the population, women are drastically underrepresented in the tech industry. People of color have it even worse. And women of color in tech? Forget it.

Valor Ventures wants to change this by empowering women and minority groups. Their purpose is to create transformational opportunities for value-focused and returns-driven investors who refuse to compromise.

Female Valor Ventures

Photo credit to Inc.com

7.    Backstage Capital

Backstage is another VC firm that strives to fund underrepresented groups like women, the LGBTQ community, and people of color.

In 2016, Backstage Arlan Hamilton closed a $5 million fund and kept the money flowing in 2017. Hamilton’s primary focus is on women of color.

8.    Lauren Flanagan and Belle Capital LP

Lauren Flanagan is the managing director at Belle Capital. Flanagan has over 25 years of experience founding and operating tech companies so she knows what she’s talking about.

When she’s not working at Belle Capital, Flanagan is managing the Phenomenelle Angels Fund: an early stage investment fund focusing on women and underrepresented groups like people of color. If you’re looking to get your business off the ground, check out Phenomenelle Angels.

9.    BBG Ventures

If you’re trying to launch a consumer-focused mobile or tech company, BBG Ventures is the place for you. There are at least one women on the founding team which frequently overlaps with Female Founders.

The name stands for “built by girls” and if you’ve got a BIG idea, BBG wants to hear it. BBG provides investment opportunities for early-stage development opportunities from entrepreneurs who seek to reimagine daily life and redefine the market.

BBG Ventures

Photo credit to BBG Ventures

10.   The Rising Tide Fund

The folks at The Rising Tide Fund realize that investing isn’t exactly a women-friendly industry – and they want to change this. Through a collaborative investment model, The Rising Tide Fund trains and mentors women in a variety of industries.

11.   Pipeline Angels

Pipeline Angels is another training opportunity for women interested in learning more about investment. All founders for this organization must identify as women or non-binary femme social entrepreneurs. Pipeline Angels focuses on startups with an environmental or social element.

Get Your Startup Off the Ground

Between the World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund, Plum Fund, Valor Ventures, Rising Tide Fund and all the other options on this list, you’ve got plenty of tools to get the ball rolling.

Feature image via Entrackr

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