by DIANA DORAHY|26 June 2020

Female Founding News

This week’s round-up of the latest female funding news on The Wrap by Next Chapter Raise, presented by Diana Dorahy.

Hi and welcome to the wrap, our quick look at the week that was. I’m Diana Dorahy.

Lots of good things happened this week. The 2020 Laureates from the Cartier Women’s Initiative were launched and what an impact group they are.

Congratulations to the East Asia winner, Charlotte Wang founder of Equota Energy, a data analytics-driven energy efficiency solutions provider. And Oceania winner Joanne Howarth founder of Woolpack Australia. These guys manufacture environmentally responsible insulated packaging made from sheep’s wool for temperature sensitive goods in transit. Well done.

Good news for SMEs in the US who are finally getting some much-needed help from the Federal Reserve.

Their highly anticipated Main Street Lending Program is launching. While the central bank won’t lend to businesses themselves, it will encourage banks to lend to struggling companies by taking the majority of the potentially risky loans off their balance sheets.

In funding news this week, the biggest story was definitely Canva. This powerhouse company has raised a further 60 million dollars taking its paper valuation to 8.6 billion.

Canva now becomes Australia’s richest company and the news has also propelled co-founder and CEO, Melanie Perkins to become the third richest woman in Australia.

And in proof that where there’s a good idea, there’s always capital available, this funding round was ten times oversubscribed.

My story of the week this week goes to a piece in Women’s Agenda talking about Australian research that’s found a compelling link between female leadership and the three p’s – profitability, performance and productivity.


Listen to these numbers:

ASX listed companies that achieved an increase of 10 percentage points or more in the share of women on their boards enjoyed a 4.9% increase in market value. What’s that worth in dollar terms? $78.5 million.

Companies that increase their share of women to key management positions and/or appoint a female CEO report up to nearly 7% increase in market value. So, bottom line? It pays to promote women.

My tip of the week of this week comes from a profile piece in Forbes about female entrepreneur extraordinaire, Gesche Haas, founder of Trailblazer Ventures a startup lab with a mission to increase female-founded ventures. As well as Dreamers & Doers, which helps entrepreneurial and influential women find each other.

She’s such mover, the joke used to be if Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg had a baby it would probably be something like Gesche Haas.


Anyway, here are her three tips for entrepreneurial success:

Stay lean – not talking diets here, she advises to take a slow and steady, sustainable approach. It’s not all about how quickly you can get up and running and funded and recognised it’s about the long game.

Focus On Impact, Not Marketing – in most cases, startups focus heavily on marketing and user acquisition and so this advice is definitely a departure from that but her advice is, concentrate on the good you offer. In her case as well as ours, it’s about the impact of community support.

It’s ok to wait – that could be waiting for money to move into an office, investing in a re-brand or expanding your offering. It won’t happen all at once so you know what, enjoy the journey. Take regular breaks, refresh, recharge. She says, and I love this, wherever her business lands at the end of the day it will have been a success because she made the road leading up to it worthwhile. She is fantastic.


Coming up next week on Next Chapter Raise…

Our July Entrepreneur in residence, Yosha Gupta and Investor-in-residence Gail Wong from HerCapital VC join us for a series of monthly events including our live Q&A call so get your questions ready.

Speaking of questions, our exclusive Next Chapter Raise with Cartier “Ask Me Anything” zoom session takes off on July 7th. This is a members only event so register through our funding calendar. This is a premier initiative with $100k up for grabs so sign up.

Registration is also open now for the The StartmeupHK Festival which kicks off on July 6-10. It’s virtual this year, as are most events on the global calendar so tickets are free. Sign up details on our Facebook page.

Have a great weekend and see you next time on The Wrap.