Female Investors

Published in "Brutkasten"

According to a study by primeCROWD, potential female investors probably want to invest in start-ups, which in turn would lead to more women setting up start-ups.

If you want to make the start-up ecosystem more diverse and fairer, you have to encourage female investors. After all, they are the key to helping women founders to raise capital and increase their numbers. This is one of the key findings of a study conducted in spring 2020 by the European investor network primeCROWD in cooperation with Alexandra Wuttig, Professor of Entrepreneurship.

Within the scope of the study, 3000 women in Germany were questioned about their investment behaviour. Twelve percent of them took part in the research project, aged between 30 and 60 years, mainly with an academic education, in a managerial position or self-employed and with an average of 20 years of professional experience.

One important finding: potential female investors are definitely interested in start-ups. 63.4 percent of the women surveyed have already considered investing in them. However, only 17.7 percent have already been active as business angels, although 45.7 percent would like to invest. primeCROWD now wants to close this gap.

Two thirds of women are aware of the risks of investing in start-ups, yet they are not afraid of them. 68 percent of them strive to improve society through impact investing to do good. At the same time, however, they are not concerned with charity, because for 61 percent, return on investment is important. Just like successful cooperation: 60 percent want to contribute their experience and knowledge to new business models as investors.

Women are still severely underrepresented in the start-up ecosystem, with only 15.7 percent of the founders being women. There are major problems, especially with regard to access to finance and financial backers, as the Female Founders Monitor published this week shows: 56.7 percent of female start-ups rate their access to the investment sector as poor.

The primeCROWD study shows that female investors would remedy this situation: 62 percent of the women participating in the study would like to support female founders in particular. But 67 percent lack knowledge about the investment process in start-ups. 80 per cent would like to see specialist advice for female investors.

Svenja Lassen, Managing Director of primeCROWD Germany, sees precise starting points and a great need for action in order to significantly increase the proportion of female investors in Europe from the current eight percent: "If we manage to increase the number of female business angels and thereby also get more capital for female founders, we will become more competitive and agile in the long term. Both active and potential female investors have clearly expressed what they have been missing in the ecosystem so far. This is exactly what we are now offering and have created the Female Investors Network for this purpose. Because diversity is an important success factor for teams and innovations.

Within the framework of the Female Investors Network, "Education Sessions" are held every first Wednesday of the month, covering topics such as angel investment, selection criteria, investment process and deal flow. After the first purely online events, Lunch & Learn took place on 1 July 2020 for the first time live in Munich and was very well received, according to primeCROWD. In addition, there are regular background discussions with female business angels, who report on their experiences and exchange ideas. Once a quarter, the network presents successful Female Startups in a Meetup, where they present themselves to the exclusively female members.

primeCROWD's main focus is on networking and supporting female investors and founders across borders, a press release concludes: The number of already registered and interested women in Austria is proportionally similar to that in Germany.

The next study on the effects of COVID-19 is planned for the entire DACH region at the beginning of 2021.