That women are under-represented in entrepreneurship, is a truth that most of us have been aware of for some time. Unfortunately, despite the increasing collective consciousness around the issue, data shows that the efforts to end this under-representation have fallen short. As such, The Bridge launched its Bridge Funding Global initiative earlier this month with the mission of helping change this reality.
According to a report by Credit Suisse, not only are women less likely to hold executive leadership positions but they also receive significantly less funding. Data shows that in Europe, all-male funding teams receive 93% of all capital invested, with only 2% going to all-female teams. This, when combined with the fact that the percentage of women in management positions in companies around the world is only 19.9%, shows a clear bias against feminine stereotypes.
While the entrepreneurial gender gap certainly seems to be closing thanks to the efforts of many organizations and private individuals, there is a lot of work to be done. With most efforts having focused on female representation in leadership positions until now, venture capital financing for female-led teams and the empowerment of female limited/general partners seems to be the next step.
The Bridge is looking to do just that by connecting limited partners with emerging female-led technology VC funds. Founded in 2020, the organization has been fulfilling this mission by organizing “The Bridge Conference”, an invite-only event focused on providing resources to connect both parties, presenting emerging funds, and offering high-quality content.
With more than 36 commitments having already been made through The Bridge to emerging fund female managers, the organization launched its new initiative earlier in June. Known as Bridge Funding Global, the platform relies on a selection committee formed by US top institutional and family office investors. The committee will include 20 permanent judges who will help select the top female GMs to become the first members.
Female GPs interested in becoming members will be able to apply twice a year, with the cap being reached once 100 GP members are selected. The judges, who collectively manage over 2 trillion, will take into consideration the program’s promises to the community, which include:
- Create meaningful and personalized connections
- Be data and growth centric
- Keep a focused, directed, unbiased, and curated access to the community
- Increase transparency on the LP landscape
- Engage ecosystem partners to ensure the best solutions and support to emerging VC managers
Competition is expected to be high given the increasing interest that The Bridge Conference has received over the past years. The last edition, which took place back in May, saw the participation of 40 LPs and 40 female GPs chosen out of 197 applicants, with a total of 36 commitments taking place. With applications closing on July 1st, there is still time to apply.