July 1, 2015
The number of women launching businesses has grown 68% between 1997-2014, more than twice the rate of men. However, women have a harder time getting funding for a number of reasons. Only 7% of investor money goes to women led startups, but Women Who Tech is actively trying to change that.
On Thursday night, Women Who Tech hosted the Women Startup Challenge Competition solely for women led startups. This competition was an inaugural event, where twelve women founders had the chance to pitch their startups to a panel of judges.
The startups chosen to pitch raised the most money in an online crowdfunding competition put on by Women Who Tech during the spring. All told, the startups who participated in the crowdfunding raised more than $365,000. The twelve startups who raised the most money were:
- Amplify Loud
- Primary Book Club
- On Second Thought
- Zidisha: Peer to Peer Lending
Womens Startup Challenge Winner: On Second Thought
On Second Thought is a messaging app that allows you to retract texts before the other party receives them. This app is especially helpful at 2am on Saturday night, or if you happen to be running for political office. Through the app you can choose a window of time in which you can take back a message before it is officially sent. Currently the app is available on Android (chosen specifically for its larger market), but will soon be available for iPhone as well.
Founder Maci Peterson gave the winning pitch to a packed house at 1776 headquarters in Washington, DC. In winning the competition she walked away with $50,000 in prize money, no strings attached, as well as the potential of attracting additional investments. In addition, On Second Thought won a semifinalist spot to compete at Tech.Co’s Startup of the Year Competition at Celebrate 2015.
The Women Startup Challenge was made possible with the help of multiple partners, including Tech.Co, which served as a media partner to the event; Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist and CraigConnects; Rad Campaign; crowdfunding platform Crowdrise; 500 Startups ;investors Joanne and Fred Wilson; and General Assembly, who co-hosted the event with 1776.
Image Credit: Flickr/woohoo_megoo
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