7 Female Investors to Watch
The number of female founders getting VC money is rising and dynamic female investors like these most likely have a lot to do with it.
By Jessica Stillman (Editor, Women 2.0)
This morning we highlighted new data that shows women founders are taking an increasingly large share of venture capital (happy weekend to you too!). Why are the numbers going in the right direction?
One reason, according to a recent Kauffman Foundation study may be the efforts of female venture capitalists. It found that “70% of women venture capitalists were in partnerships that had closed deals with women-led companies,” and added that “since only 4 to 9% of all deals go to women, it follows that women played a major role in most of the deals that went to female entrepreneurs, regardless of how few they were.”
So who are these female investors making great deals while they also nudge the ratio of who gets funding in a better direction? We decided to salute their efforts by rounding up some of the most dynamic women in the business. Meet them below (or meet many of them in person — several will be speaking or judging at our Las Vegas conference in November. Tickets are still available.)
Jenny Fielding (Head of Digital Ventures, BBC Worldwide)
The BBC may be better known for costume dramas and world news, but the broadcaster is also in the investment business through its BBC Labs for London-based digital media startups. PITCH judge Fielding heads that up. Follow her on Twitter @jefielding.
Kelly Hoey (Co-founder, Women Innovate Mobile)
Listed in Forbes as one of five women changing the world of VC/Entrepreneurship and one of 40 women to watch over 40, Hoey (@jkhoey) co-founded Women Innovate Mobile, an accelerator for female-founded mobile startups.
Aileen Lee (Founder, Cowboy Ventures)
Previously a partner with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers , Lee (@aileenlee) founded Cowboy Ventures in 2012 though she continues to work with her Kleiner Perkins companies. Cowboy Ventures is focused on smaller, seed stage investments. She’s also a PITCH judge.
Joy Marcus (Managing Director, Gotham Ventures)
A digital media veteran, Marcus describes herself a “VC Mom.” She’ll be teaching at Princeton in 2014 and has previously served as a PITCH judge. She has twice been named “Top 50 in Digital Media” by Hollywood Reporter. She’s on Twitter @JoyMarcus.
Jeanne Sullivan (General Partner, StarVest Partners)
With more than 20 years of private equity experience, Sullivan (@gianna212) considers herself a champion for helping women CEOs and has participated in our Investor Hangouts. StarVest is a New York-based venture capital firm funding expansion stage companies.
Shanna Tellerman (Partner, Google Ventures)
Previously the founder of 3D games startup Sims Ops Studios, which was acquired by Autodesk, Tellerman (@ShannaWP) is now a partner on the investing team at Google Ventures. A meeting with her goes to our PITCH winner.
Andrea Zurek (Founding Partner, XG Ventures)
An angel investor since 2006, Zurek (@andreazurek) has been named one of the top 25 tech angels by Businessweek. She has Invested in 40+ companies and had over 12 exits. Previously, she worked at Google in sales.
What names should we add to the list?
Jessica Stillman (@entrylevelrebel) is an editor at Women 2.0 and a freelance writer with interests in unconventional career paths, generational differences, and the future of work. She writes a daily column for Inc.com and has blogged for CBS MoneyWatch, GigaOM and Brazen Careerist, among others.