The top 15 VCs focused on female founders

Steven Loeb · December 10, 2021 · Short URL:

Investments into companies started by women exploded in 2021, reaching over $30B for the first time

Companies with female founders have notoriously had a tough time raising funding in Silicon Valley. Whatever you want to chalk that up to, be it sexism or simply the insider nature of the tech ecosystem, there has been a big gap for a long time.

That could possibly be changing, though, if 2021 is any indication. Finally, that imbalance seems to have taken a big hit, as investments into female-founded companies absolutely exploded during the pandemic, with both deal count and deal values reaching new highs over the past year, according to a report from Pitchbook

Through the first three quarters of 2021, female founders in the tech market saw more than $30 billion in investments, which is over increase of over 82% from 2020, and already the highest number ever. Female founders are now on pace to receive as much as $40 billion.

On top of that, deal volume is also up, and on pace to increase by 30% year-to-year. Part of this has to do with women making gains in the venture ecosystem, which the report also outlines.

For example, between 2020 and 2021, there was an increase in female general partners in some of the largest venture ecosystems in the country: in Silicon Valley, the percentage went from15.4% to 17.1%, while the increase was even greater in New York, going from 11.8% to 16.8%. Boston saw the percent of female general partners go from 13.6% to 14.5%, and LA also saw an increase, though a more modest one, from 12.1% to 12.9%.

The biggest gains, however, came in the very earliest stages of venture, with the number of female active angel investors growing 66% from 2018 to 2021. Going back further, they're up over 600% in the last decade.Pitchbook ascribes this increase, in part, to the #MeToo movement, which it believes spurred more women to take part in venture.

"The most conspicuous evidence surrounding #MeToo’s impact is the growing pool of female angel investors. Not only were more female angels active in the market after #MeToo, but
more female angel rounds went to female founders," the report says.

"In 2017, before the movement began, about 20% of female angel investments went to female founders. Today, almost a third of them do, and the ratio continues to grow."

Whether or not that's the reason, the evidence is mounting that having more women in the venture ecosystem is leading to more women being funded. Having women be in charge of the purse strings really does seem to close that gap, at least to some degree. 

Here are 15 venture capital firms who have made it their mission to invest in female founders:
Female Founders Fund

"In 2014, we created Female Founders Fund with one simple belief: women will build the companies of tomorrow. Since then, we’ve become the leading source of institutional capital for female founders raising seed capital with over $3B in enterprise value."

Fund size: $57 million

Sectors: Healthtech, consumer tech, enterprise software

Investments: Bentobox, Maven Clinic, Kensho

SoGal Ventures

"SoGal Ventures is the first women-led, next generation venture capital firm."

Fund size: $15 million 

Sectors: Better future of living, working, and staying healthy

Investments: Everywell, Parsley Health, Proscia, Werk
Backstage Capital

"Less than 10% of all venture capital deals go to Women, People of Color, and LGBT founders.
Other VCs may see this as a pipeline problem. For years, we have seen it as the biggest opportunity in investment. Backstage Capital has invested in more than 180 companies led by underrepresented founders."

Fund size: $15 million 

Sectors: Agnostic

Investments: Pandia Health, Carrot, Thesis CoutureThe WXR Venture FundThe WXR Venture Fund

"The WXR Fund invests in two of the greatest opportunities of our time: the next wave of computing + female entrepreneurs."

Fund size: $5 million

Sectors: Healthcare, enterprise training, remote collaboration, entertainment, education, AEC, retail, e-commerce

Investments: Embodied Labs, Absurd:joy, Obsess, ALL3D

"Fearless Fund invests in women of color led businesses seeking pre-seed, seed level or series A financing. Our mission is to bridge the gap in venture capital funding for women of color founders building scalable, growth aggressive companies. Fearless Fund is built by women of color for women of color."

Fund size: $20 million 

Sectors: Agnostic

Investments: HairBrella, Streamlytics, Capway

"We designed our funds the way we want to invest: With a special interest in appealing to women who own half of the wealth, buy the majority of products, but rarely invest in startup companies." 

Fund size: $10 million

Sectors: Greene energy, food, agtech, healthtech

Investments: Everlywell, Madorra, Nest CollaborativeRogue Women’s Fund

"An early seed stage fund investing in the best women-led tech startups across the US."

Fund size: $5 million

Sectors: Agnostic

Investments: AllVoices, RushTix, Source

"We founded Auxxo to create awareness for the need to drive diversity in the investment world. And to show that being successful female investors is possible alongside having a family."

Fund size: $15 million

Sectors: Agnostic

Investments: Qualifyze, gitti, Localyze
FIVE35 Ventures

"FIVE35 Ventures is committed to unlocking capital and growth opportunities for female-focused early stage African technology startups." 

Fund size: Unknown

Sectors: Digital transformation and IoT, healthTech and wellness, FinTech, InsureTech, AgriTech, telecomms and media, enterprise solutions, smart cities & energy tech, education tech and skills, mobility tech, climate & GreenTech

Investments: Zindi, Shuttlers
Rethink Impact Closes $182M Fund II, Making it the Largest, U.S. Venture  Capital Firm Investing in Female-Led Tech Companies Tackling Global  ChallengesReThink Impact

"We are a venture capital firm investing in female and non-binary leaders using technology to solve the world’s biggest problems. We believe that the next generation of extraordinary companies will find success through their relentless pursuit of mission, for the benefit of all communities."

Fund size: $300 million

Sectors: Health, environmental sustainability, education, economic empowerment

Investments: Spring Health, Solv, Evidation Health
SteelSky VenturesSteelSky Ventures

"Our innovative approach allows investment across the spectrum of women’s health indications and in technology infrastructure that supports new and innovative care delivery models."

Fund size: Unknown

Sectors: Medical devices, consumer health, digital health, new healthcare delivery models, ePharmacy, retail therapeutics

Investments: Lark, Twentyeight Health, Cayaba Care
hypatia capital logo

Hypatia Capital

"Hypatia Capital is an asset management firm focused on sponsoring female CEOs and investors.  Our network of CEO-Level women, asset managers, and public board member network is our collaborative platform." 

Fund size: $100 million

Sectors: Products, education, financial technology, media, retail, services, technology

Investments: Unknown

BBG Ventures LogoBBG Ventures 

"BBG Ventures is an early-stage fund backing big ideas that will reshape the way we live. We focus on female founders who intuitively understand the dominant consumer, enabling them to address the collective or individual lived experience of the 99%. Female founders are poised to do giant things. We’re here to give them that first, crucial investment.

Fund size: $10 million

Sectors: Health and wellbeing, future of education and work, climate friendly products and platforms, overlooked and emerging consumers

Investments: Alula, Fiveable, StarfaceBELLE Capital USA

"BELLE Capital USA, LP is an early stage angel fund focused on building great companies in underserved capital markets across the USA."

Fund size: Unknown

Sectors: Digital/mobile/internet (IT), technology-enabled products and services, life sciences/medical devices/health IT (Digital Health), CleanTech market sectors

Investments: Crater, Joylux, Vital VioHome | Golden Seeds VenturesGolden Seeds Ventures

"We invest in female founders with expertise in their domain"

Fund size: $150 million

Sectors: B2B technology & services, healthcare

Investments: Bone Health Technologies, FORTË, Lark

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