How Tough it is for Women Entrepreneurs to Bag Funding or Convince Investors?
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Initially, there were so fewer women entrepreneurs that it was almost correct to believe that it is only the prerogative of men to step into entrepreneurship. However, as time went on, so did the trends. The trends changed drastically, as one after another, women entrepreneurs started emerging.
Surely, if today we stand in 2019, it is correct and comfortable to say, that there are a lot of women in the front lines of business, who are not anymore held back from advancing. While the world has to some extent been able to remove the biases that are meted out against women, small gaps still exist. And what about funding? How much faith or clarity do investors exhibit in women entrepreneurs?
No Dearth of Options
Kiran Dham CEO, Globus Infocom, replies in the affirmative and feels there are numerous options available for women, “Women entrepreneurs are the new rising stars in Indian business territories. Many organizations prefer to back women-led business initiatives and provide mentoring and guidance to ensure the right assistance.”
She also adds that crowdfunding has also emerged as a viable option for female entrepreneurs to generate funds for their business implementations. “Another option for women entrepreneurs, who are not able to collect funding easily, is Angel investors which are women-led venture capital funds who are providing funding backup along with other resources and expertise.” It can, therefore, be inferred that with so many options available, funding is not that big a predicament for women entrepreneurs.
What is Your USP?
Raising capital is not a past tale, it besets entrepreneurs even today whether a male or a female. However, Srishti Baweja, Director E2E Networks says, “I believe that a woman who is able to articulate the USPs of the product/services that her company offers, has a better chance of attracting funding.”
To position one as a strong candidate for funding, women should find out as much possible about the investor and the concerns they may have.
Are Investors Presumptuous?
Women have family and work and a thousand other things they have to juggle. Most of the times, they lack the choice to make decisions. Aparna Thakker, Founder and CEO of Empowerji, elaborates on this point, “For women entrepreneurs securing funding may be more difficult than male counterparts due to certain presumptions about her family obligations.” However, Thakker feels if a women entrepreneur can establish the need for her business, its scale and the potential money it can make, an investor is likely to be interested.
Build Something of Value
When you say business, you mean money. A world that is ruled by commerce, give-and-take policies, returns, rewards, it is hard to do just goal and rosy talks. Investors are always looking at what you can give, how much return your idea can produce, therefore appeasing them isn’t the easiest thing on this planet.
Tanvi Johri - Founder Carmesi has valuable advice for this, “By doing some great work in their fields, showing measurable results, and building something that truly holds value.”
Everybody has connections but it boils down to who your connections are and how you approach them. Nidhi Yadav, Creative Head & Founder, AKS Clothings, “Create connections through various networks, who do not judge on the basis of performance, but future potential.”
Yadav also adds, “Hence, for women, the entrepreneurial journey in the very first year of the business is quite a formidable task. However, we hear a lot of success stories of women entrepreneurs.”