Top Women Entrepreneurs Pay It Forward for Female Founders

UBS and Rent the Runway are teaming up to find great companies and get them great capital. One catch: your start up has to have a female founder. Find out how these women entrepreneurs are giving back with both hands--

Rent the Runway co-founders Jennifer Hyman and Jenny Fleiss – in partnership with UBS – are on a mission: to break traditional barriers in women’s paths and democratize the knowledge and resources necessary to build impactful ventures.

Having raised over $100 million in venture capital funding for Rent the Runway (which has 5 million members to date), Jenn and Jenny have revolutionized the fashion retail industry and want to encourage other women to establish their own disruptive businesses. In  2015, Rent the Runway officially launched the Rent the Runway Foundation to inspire and ignite the next generation of female entrepreneurs.

Looking for women entrepreneurs

Project Entrepreneur ignites bold ideas by providing women access to the tools, training and networks needed to build scalable, economically impactful companies. “We’ll reach this goal through a multi-faceted national initiative that includes this robust digital hub, multi-city events, a venture competition, and a 5-week accelerator program,” says Jennifer.

Women start companies at a rate 1.5 times the national average but account for less than 10 percent of founders at high-growth firms; while the passion and talent clearly exists, barriers stand in the way of women maximizing the economic significance of their efforts. That’s where Project Entrepreneur comes in. To apply, you have to have raised less than $100K in institutional capital. Here’s the link to the application.

Advisory Council

The council for this project is a first class collection of folks who can help, including:

Katia Beauchamp is Founder of Birchbox

Kirsten Green is Founder and CEO of Forerunner Ventures

Scott Friend is Managing Director, Boston at Bain Capital Ventures

Caroline Ghosn is Founder and CEO of Levo League

Fran Hauser is Venture Partner at Rothenberg Ventures

Aileen Lee is Founder and Partner at Cowboy Ventures

Angela Lee is Founder and CEO at 37 Angels

Eileen Lee is Chief Operating Officer at Venture for America

Susan Lyne is President, BBG Ventures at AOL

Ramona Orteaga is VP of Strategic Partnerships at Latino Startup Alliance

Cynthia Rubio is Founder and CEO of Radiant RFID

Chad Womack is National Director, HBCU, Innovation, Commercialization and Entrepreneurship Initiative

Monique Woodard is a Co-Founder of Black Founders and the creator of the Speak Chic App

Nnena Ukuku is Partner at Venture Gained Legal and a Co-Founder of Black Founders

Why UBS?

Project Entrepreneur is a program of UBS Elevating Entrepreneurs, the firm’s flagship philanthropic entrepreneurship initiative and a portfolio of partnerships and programs committed to bringing the right resources, to the right entrepreneurs, to help spur economic growth. Entrepreneurs have long served as the backbone of the American economy, and UBS is committed to delivering the firm’s resources, both financial and intellectual, to enable them to grow their companies, create jobs and contribute to their local economies. They’ve partnered with Rent the Runway to provide the ultimate startup success package.

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