As an entrepreneur, whether male or female, raising funds for your business is, essentially, a big part of your task.
One school of thought holds that there is an absolute inadequacy of funding opportunities for female entrepreneurs. Its statistics designate that although women start-up businesses, 4.8 times, faster than the social average, they still struggle to gain access to capital without running into debt.
While seventy-two per cent of women founders mention lack of access to capital as the first obstacle to starting a business, forty-nine per cent indicates lack of access to coaches and mentors and thirty-one per cent, lack of access to support operation, community and connections.
Another believes that female entrepreneurs are more ‘open to business funding’ than their male counterparts.
Whatever the case, the reality is that only one per cent of all businesses, despite the gender of the founder, will ever raise venture capital.
So, where does the ninety-nine per cent of the businesses startup funding come from?
In this article, we shall be exploring some of the many ways by which you can get funding or raise capital as a female entrepreneur, for your startup business.
1. Programs/Platforms that help women get funding
There exist several platforms online that assist women to get the funding they need for their startup businesses. Among these are;
- iFundWomen (iFW)
This is a startup funding platform that renders access to capital via crowdfunding and grants. Its mission is ‘ to equip women with the confidence, knowledge, and funding they need to bring their visions to life’. iFW equally enables women entrepreneur to access expert business coaching- on everything entrepreneurs require to know and also, a network of women business owners that sparks confidence, expedites knowledge and kindles action.
“At IFundWomen, we believe that nobody should go into debt funding the early days of a business”. Contact https://ifundwomen.com/ for the Capital, Coaching and Connections that is critical to launching and growing your business.
- Female Funders
It is a platform founded by Katherine Hague with the aim to support 1000 women in building their 1st angel investment. They believe that through education, access to investment openings and the global community, women founders can make a significant impact in the entrepreneurial industry.
Female funders is, therefore, offering them the devices needed to become early-stage investors – eventually moulding the future of funding.
- Female Founders Fund, F3.
This is an early-stage fund investing in the exponential strength of outstanding female ability, particularly investing in technology industries founded by women. Besides, they invest in media, e-commerce, advertising and web-enabled businesses. More info @ https://femalefoundersfund.com/
- Women Venture Capital Fund
It is a platform that also invests in early-stage, A/B, income begetting, high-growth businesses directed by executives team inclusive of women. Women VC fund maintains that businesses with females in superior management exceed almost every metric. They simply believe that gender diversity is crucial to entrepreneurial progress. More info @https://www.womensvcfund.com/
- 37 Angels Founders
It is a platform comprising 37 different funding networks. Although 37 Angels invest in any gender founder, they have categorized some support particularly for female founders (*provides funding). More info http://www.37angels.com/
A business grant is an amount of money provided to a business by the government, corporations, foundations or trusts, to promote the business with no obligation to be refunded and/or committed equity in exchange.
To encourage female entrepreneurship as well as promote female entrepreneurs, various state agencies, nonprofits organizations and private associations render small business grants.
Grant contests are an extraordinary opening for women business proprietors. These awards are typically free funds that require ‘no refunds’, unlike business loans and credit cards. While some grant opportunities are open to all business owners, others are geared particularly at female entrepreneurs.
Whatever the case, it is important to bear in mind that competition for grants is pretty high and as a result, very few businesses end up getting a grant.
Nonetheless, if you understand exactly how to go about the benefits available, the better your chances.
How to apply for a Grant.
Though each business grant is unprecedented, with a unique set of requirements, some common steps apply to all of them. Among these are;
- Firstly, make sure to research properly. Verify the online openings to distinguish grants that can fit/match your business. Attending trade conferences as well as conversing with peers in the enterprise can equally be a fabulous way to discover novel business grant openings that are not broadly published.
- Secondly, verify Eligibility. Almost all grants hold precise eligibility specifications which may include; demographic, the age of the business, education level among others. Proper verification of eligibility could save you from wasting time petitioning for a grant that may not be the right fit for your business.
- Thirdly, make sure to Apply on time: Create time in your daily schedule to apply for grants for the company/business. Even though it may be hard to create time to press in applications, the reward for acquiring finance for your startup can be enormous.
- Fourthly, consider tracking your applications. Generating a spreadsheet for grants you applied for as well as tracing impending deadlines is an exceptional way to remain organized and stimulated thru the process.
Don’t forget that it’s never advisable to place all of your eggs in a single basket as grants are just one way of getting funds. To add, check out business loans for female entrepreneurs, venture capital firms, women-only business accelerators, and other capital-raising alternatives that might apply to you.
Grants available for women entrepreneurs
- Amber Grant
Amber grant is a small business grant for female-owned businesses, founded in honour of a young female who died before accomplishing her entrepreneurial aspirations.
It was launched in 1998 by Womensnet.com as a tribute to late Amber, a young lady who fell before meeting her business dreams. The grant was designed to support young female entrepreneurs to reach their aims when Amber couldn’t.
This program grants an award of two thousand dollars every month to female business owners with an added $25000 at the end of the year to a single winner. Applications are open throughout the year. To apply, narrate your story and pay an application fee of fifteen dollars. See more https://ambergrantsforwomen.com/get-an-amber-grant/apply-now/.
- Eileen Fisher Female Entrepreneur Grant Program
Tips: This is a business grant for female-owned businesses which are positively impacting the society and environment. The company dubbed “Fashion designer Eileen Fisher” started this program 16 years ago and were granting $100,000 to 10 female-owned businesses annually. But in 2019, the program was re-launched updating the amount to $200000 with new sets of rules. The applications are completed online. https://www.eileenfisher.com/environmental-justice-grant?country=CM¤cy=USD.
- Girlboss Foundation Grant
Tips: GirlBoss Foundation Grant is a Database of chances for female across industries. To apply, use the database to recognise related possibilities and follow the directions thereof. Possible rewards differ per opportunity. But in case you’re scanning for a wide resource of grants for women, then check out GrantsforWomen.org.
- FedEx Small Business Grant
Tips: FedEx small business grant is a business grants for all small businesses. In this award, 10 winners win grants for their businesses in addition to FedEx printing and business services completely free of charge. You can follow application procedures at https://www.fedex.com/en-us/small-business/grant-contest/2020-winners.html#/rules.
Note that even though this grant is not technically for female entrepreneurs only, women small business proprietors are urged to apply. It may be worth noting that the very first winner of this grant was a female by the name Nicole Snow, who is presently the founder and chief executive officer of Darn Good Yarn.
FedEx’s grant has granted hundreds of thousand dollars to small business owners worldwide since 2013.
Yearly, ten winners obtain funding from FedEx, one of which gets a $25,000 grand prize, in addition to a $7,500 worth FedEx services. Another winner gets a $15,000 silver prize with an added $5,000 in FedEx services and the remaining 8 winners get a $7,500 bronze prize each with an added $1,000 worth printing services.
These grant awards may seem small but can be extremely important especially for those working to get set up the foundations for their businesses. Don’t forget that, there’s no expectation for repays.
There are, however, so many opportunities for aspiring female entrepreneurs out there, so many such that, they can not be exhausted in one article. The above resources are just a few of the many sources to consider if you need funding for a start-up business.
Notwithstanding, Female pitch summits are one of the top events to consider attending as an aspiring female entrepreneur or investor as this will expose you to so many more realistic opportunities other than the one you’ll read on paper or see online. One such opportunity is;
‘MAY 2021 SAN FRANCISCO Female Founder Pitch SUMMIT’.
- The Female Founders Pitch Summit is an exclusive event devoted to female founders & investors to fund more female-owned businesses.
- Do you want to begin a business? or You got a top business idea. Perhaps you own a company or want to invest in a female-owned business. Maybe you just want to connect with hundreds of female founders and female investors to get inspired. Then you certainly won’t want to miss this unusual opportunity.
- Attend this Summit with over 100 female founders and over 100 female investors and get prospects on how advanced institutional investors survey options.
- Gather insightful thriving approaches for fundraising, portfolio management, deal sourcing just to name a few.
- Attend and Engage in forward-thinking conversations centred on subjects of rational business concerns.
- Gain access to uncommon information and unique networking possibilities to advance your business.
Grasp the life-changing opportunity, register today @ https://femalefounderspitchsummit.com/