Investing in Women

It’s Monday morning, but this one will be bright because I have pleasure of introducing you to Katie Kiewel. Katie is one of those women that everyone is excited to meet, and it is not just because of her really cool job at 1776 Ventures, a global seed fund. She is dedicated to women helping women and knows that are ways to improve the state of women in our business world.

Katie sees issues with the current state of women entrepreneurs.

“I would like to see an increase of women on founding teams of venture-backed startups. Based on research by Crunchbase from 2009-2012 the percentage of venture-funded companies with women founders increased by approximately 8 percent. However, the growth has been flat since 2012 staying at approximately 17 percent. I hope to see this number grow year-over-year. As an investor, I naturally would love to see more notable exits from women-led companies.”

But she keeps a positive attitude and really sees a chance for change in the future.

“I’m very optimistic about the future of tech and companies making diversity and inclusion a core part of a company’s DNA early on. I think companies and leaders are learning and iterating on how to best measure, assess, and increase diversity and inclusion within their organizations.”

This optimism comes from knowing that people are working together and finding innovative ways to create a better future.

“Support the organizations and the women paving the way. You can do this in a variety of ways such as making conscious purchasing decisions, making introductions, attending events, and generally promoting and creating visibility for startups. An organization supporting women entrepreneurs in DC is The Vinetta Project. Amelia Friedman, Anna Mason, and Rebecca Yarbrough are three rock stars that have championed this effort with the support of an incredible board at Vinetta. For those that aren’t familiar, Vinetta hosts a series of events for the community including Fireside chats, Pitch & Panel Showcases, and Founders and Funders dinners.”

We’ll leave today on a positive note, but please come back next Monday to learn the tips Katie has for investors, people in companies, the local communities, bosses, and everyone in between.

Thanks so much to Katie for her insight and great advice!

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