Last year only 16% of startups pitching VCs were women-led. Here’s why that needs to change.
By Natalia Oberti Noguera (Founder & CEO, The Pipeline Fellowship)
Women entrepreneurs don’t pitch as often as their male peers. I encourage women to step up to the plate, whether it’s asking for capital to fund their startup, or asking for a raise at work.
In 2012, only 16% of startups pitching to angels in the U.S. were women-led, according to the Center for Venture Research at the University of New Hampshire. Out of that 16%, 25% secured funding. Here are three benefits of pitching your startup:
Pitching your startup is a way that you can receive advice and suggestions from potential investors that can help your business model get closer to meeting market needs.
Don’t view pitching as a zero-sum game, where you either get funding or you don’t. Instead, view pitching as an opportunity for you to meet key influencers. While a potential investor may not be interested in investing in your startup, she/he may know someone who might want to learn more and, by pitching, you increase your network, as well as you chances of securing a relevant introduction.
And Yes, Capital
One of my favorite sayings is, “If you want money, ask for feedback” (and we come full circle…). Pitching is an opportunity for you to share your startup, engage people, and secure funding. Whether someone wants to invest on the spot, or you receive a referral to a potential investor, remember that putting yourself out there can get you closer to raising capital.
Article originally posted on Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program. Photo credit: Maria Ly via Flickr.
Are you as bold as you should be about pitching your ideas?
About the blogger: Natalia Oberti Noguera is founder and CEO of the Pipeline Fellowship, an angel investing bootcamp for women philanthropists.Women’s eNews recognized her as one of 21 Leaders for the 21st Century for 2012 and Business Insider included her on its 2013 list “The 30 Most Important Women in Tech under 30.” Follow her on Twitter @nakisnakis.