Women's Angel Sidecar Fund
As announced in the Victorian Budget 2020/21, LaunchVic is set to run a $10 million ‘Women's Angel Sidecar Fund’ (WASF) to assist women founders to raise the capital they need to grow their early stage startups and create new high value jobs.
Increasing access to capital for women founders will improve their rate of success leading to increases in participation of women in the startup economy. It is also anticipated the fund will inspire women who are thinking about launching a startup to do so.
The $10 million WASF will operate over three years, and provide up to $250,000 co-investment into each early stage startup. The fund will be established as a ‘Sidecar Fund’, investing alongside private sector investors including Victorian Angel Networks, leveraging the government’s investment 3:1 thereby unlocking $30 million of private investment.
Sidecar funds are used in many jurisdictions to encourage early investment into startups by encouraging private investors to increase their participation in angel funding rounds.
Planning is now underway for this initiative. It is expected the Fund will commence in the first half of 2021.
If you are a female startup founder, we encourage you to register your startup at findingstartups.launchvic.org, and use the platform to search for and be discovered by investors.
If you would like to be kept up to date on the WASF please sign up here.
Victorian Startup Ecosystem Mapping Report
LaunchVic’s annual Victorian Startup Ecosystem Mapping Report for 2020 identified approximately 1,900 technology startups in Victoria. Women represented 20 per cent of founders, down from 28 per cent in 2018. The Report also found that at all stages of development, women-founded firms represented a significant minority. As development stages progress, representation of women founders decreased.
While no startup sector show gender parity, some sectors, such as EduTech at 42% and ConsumerTech at 32% demonstrate increased participation by women in Victoria.
A report commissioned by LaunchVic and conducted by globally recognised startup investor expert Prof Josh Lerner, Harvard Business School, states that globally 13 per cent of founders receiving angel investment are women. In 2017, StartupAus reported that only 4 per cent of women founders received funding, indicating a larger issue in Australia. Yet the positive impact of Angels on startup success is well known, with startups that have received angel support 70 per cent more likely to obtain financing, 20 per cent more likely to hire additional employees and 10 per cent more likely to be involved in a successful exit.