The Lip Gloss Gap: Juliet Fallowfield, Fallow, Field & Mason
19/06/2023 by The Red Tree
“More work can be done to demystify the intricacies of starting a business as well as what goes in to a raise”
Why do you think the female fundraising gap is so stark?
We need to encourage more women to start businesses to increase the quantity, then when ready to seek investment as the balance is still way off what it should be to reach equality. The Allison Rose review reported an increase last year in female founded companies however this is still only 20% of new company registrations at Companies House. If we can tackle the pipeline this will at least be a start.
Equality on the decision making side also needs to be achieved. The Harvard Business Review cites only 8% of VC investors are women. Fewer than 1% are black.
What’s been your experience of working with and interviewing female founders?
Interviewing any founder for the 'How To Start Up' podcast has been fascinating but female founders do offer another layer to their story, given many are also starting a family or are the primary parent. Although founding a business requires a huge amount of work, and the juggle is certainly real, I have learnt from many female founders that it has actually given them more freedom and autonomy to manage childcare than a salaried role might.
What do you think needs to happen to help close the female fundraising gap?
More work can be done to demystify the intricacies of starting a business as well as what goes into a raise. We also need to educate the decision makers at VCs further on why diversity is crucial. If we can reach more women to explain that it isn’t an impossible task to start and then raise, our total economy would benefit in the long run. To cite the Alison Rose review 'Closing the gap between women and men could add an additional £250 billion in Gross Value Add to the UK economy, equivalent to 4 years of economic growth.'
The Lip Gloss Gap is a series by The Red Tree shining a light on the role that the beauty industry plays in closing the female fundraising gap. The series will feature interviews with founders and fundraisers which will be released monthly. We invite you to share your experiences as we continue the conversation.
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