A recent report by PwC, in collaboration with The Crowdfunding Center: Women unbound - Unleashing female entrepreneurial potential - has revealed startling findings. Below I have summarised a few of the most fascinating findings and conclusions – you can download the full 24 page report by following the link below this article.
Based on two years of seed crowdfunding data from nine of the biggest crowdfunding platforms globally – the report indicated that overall:
Campaigns led by women were 32% more successful at reaching their funding target than those led by men across a wide range of sectors, geography and cultures.
Seventeen percent of male-led campaigns reach their finance target, compared with 22% of female-led campaigns.
$87 is the average pledge amount to female-led campaigns, 5% higher than male-led campaigns.
Men were far more likely to run a campaign: in technology 9 male-led campaigns for every female-led campaign / in Digital Technology 3 male-led campaigns for every female-led campaign.
In the UK:
Less than half of campaigns were initiated by women: 6,013 compared to 13,053 initiated by men.
26% of female campaigns are successfully funded against 20% of male campaigns.
The highest number of campaigns are initiated in the Entertainment & Media sector followed by Retail & Consumer Goods.
In the above sectors campaign success rates were: Entertainment & Media - female-led 30%, male-led 23%; Retail & Consumer Goods - female-led 30%, male-led 23%.
Interestingly worldwide the biggest gap looking at male-led versus female-led success rates in crowdfunding were in Ireland with female-led 20% higher, Denmark and New Zealand both 15% higher. The smallest gaps were in Canada, Italy and Spain where women had a 3% greater success rate.
So what does this mean?
“What the data in this report shows clearly is that opportunities for women entrepreneurs have not been equal, but thanks to crowdfunding, entrepreneurs can now access the market directly – and this makes a huge difference.”
“Endemic bias is a problem women entrepreneurs should no longer face. Eradicating these barriers provides opportunities that will benefit women and men, business, and society...”
What else is in the report?
There is a good introduction to Crowdfundiing and some background information on the data, plus interesting graphics illustrating key finding. The broad benefit of opportunities of seed crowdfunding are pulled out. Besides the obvious benefit of raising funds, other benefits include market validation, the ability to pre-sell a product and increased likelihood of forging partnerships.
It highlights some of the extra barriers that are still clearly present when it comes to female-led or owned businesses getting access to finance, such as:
“VCs with only male partners are more likely to invest in male-led projects or businesses - only 2.7% of 6,793 companies funded by VCs had a female CEO.”
“…barriers to women’s participation within networks is often a critical reason for lack of access to opportunity.”
“In the UK, over 220 early-stage, digital startups found that male entrepreneurs were 86% more likely to be VC funded than their female counterparts, and men were 59% more likely to secure angel investment.”
It has a section on the way forward and a couple of case studies.
Article written by Linda Eziquiel, R&D Tax Credits Specialist