I swear the title isn’t a way to be rude, I truly believe in it. I talk regularly to business angels in my syndicates (angel syndicate, not the mob …) or angels that I meet as a lawyer/investor. More than 90% think that women can be better fundraisers. Wonder why? The best explanation is in a joke that was quite popular at the London Business Expo 2012.
Angel: “What do you plan to do?”
Man: “I will conquer the world”
Woman: “Our app will help us to conquer the world”
Angel: “How are you going to use my funds”
Man “I will conquer the world”
Woman “I am going to use $352.56 in electricity, but it can be $359.67 if we decide to take part to an extra conference next year, not sure yet.”
Men are usually all about themselves, women are all about their “baby” (the start-up). I was part of the first Internet boom and I think that ego was one of the major driver of the first internet bubble. I have made this mistake myself many times, and nowadays I love to invest into people who care about their project more than about themselves.
Another reason why women are particularly effective in fundraising for start-up is not logical but “natural”. Business angels are mostly men over 40-50 years. Their attention increase when a woman speak, and the Neanderthal in us doesn’t feel threatened by any “king of the jungle” competition.
Unfortunately for women, it doesn’t mean that their life will be easy. Angels prefer to listen a presentation run by women, but are they ready to trust the same woman with their money? I can’t say. I have spent to many years in big corporation, and gender was clearly an issue for many of my colleagues. Eventually startups can be different, I hope so. What’s your experience?
Image credits: JD Hancock at Flickr.com