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Funding for women entrepreneurs, sorely lacking — local investors network

Women entrepreneurs
MAIN’s The Bottom Line: Why Investing in Women is Good Business held at the KMC Podium.

Women entrepreneurs are underserved of investment opportunities, according to the latest Gender Lens Investing Series—The Bottom Line: Why Investing in Women is Good Business—of the Manila Angel Investors Network, the country’s premier private investors network.

“With less than three percent of the global venture capital funds going to women-led startups, there is an untapped investing opportunity for angel investors and venture capitalists,” Tinna Di Cicco, MAIN’s Gender Lens Investing Committee chairperson, said.

Women-led startups are those with female founders or its leadership comprise majority of women.

In the Philippines, only one out of four small and medium enterprises are owned by women, according to the report of MAIN’s partner, Investing in Women, an Australian Government initiative to catalyze women’s economic empowerment in Southeast Asia.

“We have to recognize that women-led startups can also deliver economic returns,” Di Cicco said.

“Investors are missing out on investible deals. Gender understanding leads to better investment decisions,” Dr. Julia Newton-Howes, CEO of Investing in Women, said.

“Women account for half the suppliers, customers, and talent-pool. Investing in women is not only good for business, but it is the right thing to do,” Julia Abad, executive director of the Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment, said.

Admittedly, however, Jose Paolo Delgado, President and CEO of Delbros Group, said that efforts to promote gender equality in investing is still in the early stages of building up awareness and engagement.

In the current fiscal year, MAIN has invested 50 percent of its allotted capital to women-led startups. In the coming years, the network is seeking to invest more than half of their startup investment portfolio to women entrepreneurs.

“We actively seek out women-led startups and look at their business case, and provide them with coaching and guidance for their pitches. We have a mentoring team comprising MAIN’s business leaders from across various industries to help them gain more investment opportunities,” Di Cicco said.

Out of 117 high-net-worth members, MAIN has 22 women angel investors and 11 dedicated mentors. The network has so far invested in 10 women-led startups.

MAIN’s GLI Series is made possible in partnership with Investing in Women. Investing in Women uses innovative approaches to improve women’s economic participation as employees and as entrepreneurs in the Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Myanmar through workplace gender equality, impact investment for SMEs and influencing gender norms to positively shift attitudes and practices to support women in the world of work.

If you are a post-MVP startup looking for investment from MAIN, submit your pitch deck to [email protected] for their Screening Committee’s review.

If you want to diversify your portfolio to include angel investing, reach out to [email protected] and become part of the Philippines’ largest and most active angel network.

To know more about MAIN’s schedule of GLI Series, visit: https://www.facebook.com/mainph.

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