By Fleming Farrow, JumpFund Intern
Here at the JumpFund our mission has always been to invest women’s capital in female-led companies. After launching our fund in January 2014, we have added nine companies to our portfolio. New statistics are in about angel investment and they show that JumpFund and other angel investment funds are truly contributing to a successful 2014 for women entrepreneurs.
A recent article on Forbes titled, “Angels Change The Ratio For Women Entrepreneurs” by Geri Stengel, highlights the recent studies by the Center for Venture Research and Crunchbase. The data from these studies provides a positive change compared to the dismal returns from the 2009 studies on angel investments in women.
Looking at a ten year trend-
- The number of male angels has grown 13%, but the number of female angels has grown an impressive 318%.
- The number of male entrepreneurs seeking funding grew by only 25%, and the number of female entrepreneurs seeking funding has exploded by 635%.
- The number of angels backing all-male teams has grown 22%, and the number of women-owned, angel-backed companies has jumped a whopping 234%.
We at the JumpFund (JF) are very excited to see these numbers! The 50 plus women investors in JF are a part of the 318% growth and the pool of over 70 companies applying for funding in 2014 contribute to the 635% growth of female entrepreneurs seeking funding. Approximately 316,000 angels invested $24.1 billion in 73,400 companies in United States in 2014, according to the Center for Venture Research, of which the JumpFund contributed almost $1 million to the pot. And the JumpFund was recently listed in Medium.com among the “superheroes of the tech startup world” as one of the top angels and early-stage investors in women.
Kristina Montague, managing partner of the JumpFund, echoed these statistics to the Chattanooga Magazine. “We have been overwhelmed with substantial deal flow of exceptional, high-grown, women-led companies since opening our doors last June,” says Montague. “The demand for new avenues for capital from women led companies is evident and even more than we had imagined.”
However, it is not just money that seed companies are seeking. Sonja Hoel Perkins, founder of Broadway Angels, was quoted in Stengel’s article saying, “It’s not just money angels provide, it’s introductions to major customers, key employees, vendors and additional funding. They also provide mentoring and strategic advice.”
These are the tools that the JumpFund aims to provide for our portfolio companies as well. We have engaged our Limited Partners as mentors and resources for several of our companies. We have opened our rolodexes and networks to women entrepreneurs seeking funding. And, we have helped leverage additional funds and partnerships for companies in which we’ve invested.
All in all, the numbers are beginning to verify our theses — 1) there is ample dealflow of exciting, strong, high potential women-led startups, even in the Southeastern U.S. and 2) women are interested in becoming active angel investors investing in women-led companies. Our final proof will be in our portfolio’s ROI. We hope to contribute those stats to the next round of research on the success of women-led growth ventures.