Being a female founder of a fast-growing company can often feel like a challenging and isolating experience. See how UBS created a program to provide support for innovative female leaders.
Although women are starting more businesses than ever, only 3% generate USD 500,000 or more in annual revenue. This is because female founders have less access to capital, resources and networks than their male counterparts. In fact, only 2% of the USD 85 billion dollars in venture capital funding went to female founders in 2017 1. And we want to help change that – it's why we started Project Entrepreneur to support innovative women entrepreneurs and level the playing field for female founders. More than 400 UBS colleagues across all business areas have engaged in every aspect of the program, from application review to facilitating workshops to volunteering at events.
Project Entrepreneur is a US-based program that ignites bold ideas and enables women to build scalable, high growth companies. Funded and designed by UBS in 2015, the venture competition has attracted 1,800 submissions from an ethnically diverse group of female founders from nearly every state in the country, with 25 industries represented including e-commerce, healthcare, consumer products and fintech.
Five entrepreneurial trailblazers we worked this year really made an impression. Learn more about their journeys and challenges.
1. Christine Schindler, PathSpot Technologies
How she's disrupting: protecting restaurants and their customers from the threat of food-borne illness
2. Erin Janklow, Entrada ESL
How she's disrupting: empowering service industry workers to speak English as they work, using audio and support systems
3. Aline Sara, NaTakallam
How she's disrupting: providing refugees and displaced people with an income by connecting them to remote language and translation opportunities
4. Eva Sadej, Floss Bar
How she's disrupting: reimagining oral health through a convenient, affordable and fun way to get basic dental services
5. Stephanie Conduff, Leche Lounge
How she's disrupting: providing portable lactation suites empowering women in the workplace by solving a legal mandate