Investors’ Circle (IC) was recently highlighted in a Pitchbook Report on female-founded, VC-funded companies. IC is the second most active group of investors who are investing in at least one female founder, and of the top groups, IC is only group not exclusively focused on investing in women! We are proud that our membership is nearly half women. According to IC member Laury Saligman, “The gender gap in finance is real.” She suggests two reasons: lack of women funders and biases. So what do we do about it?
Activate more women on the investor side. Based on her findings from research at the Kauffman Foundation, IC member Alicia Robb is now driven to increase capital access for women by activating more female investors. She suggests that organizations like IC, Next Wave, and High Water Women create places where women can learn and actively invest.
Take advantage of the many ways to invest! Drianne Benner, an IC member based out of New York, encourages investors to “embrace the totality of their portfolio.” How can you promote gender equity and diversity in your direct investments and across your assets?
Be intentional in who you’re working with as you make investing decisions. Firms that are gender diverse are more likely to understand how to assess gender impact, so consider the gender leadership of the fund managers in which you invest. Benner is happy to serve as a resource for you if you’d like help in finding and assessing firms.
Serve on boards and committees where allocation decisions are being made. Be or advocate for the diversity we need in decision-making.
Advise female entrepreneurs. Contact Renata from the IC team if you’d like to learn more about how IC is supporting entrepreneurs.
Attend events. Join the discourse this fall:
- ACA Women’s Investor Summit in Boston on October 4-6
- Next Wave’s Women and Impact Investing Workshop in Boston on October 4-5
- Northern New England Women’s Investor Network Educational Event in Portsmouth on November 1.
- Criterion’s TOOLKIT workshop in Denver on November 7
- High Water Women in New York on November 30
In what other ways can we activate more women in investing and fund more women-led companies? Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts.