// The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science is developing its ‘Boosting Female Founders’ Initiative, and is seeking feedback …
Research has shown (see sources below) that startups founded by women tend to fare better than those started by men even though women encounter higher barriers to success than their male-only counterparts. Female entrepreneurs can struggle to access the capital, networks and resources they need to take their businesses to the next level.
Industry Minister Karen Andrews has launched consultations for the Australian Government’s Boosting Female Founders Initiative (one of the measures announced in the Women’s Economic Security Package in November 2018). Consultations will run until the 4 October 2019.
The new program – set to start in July next year – aims to assist in removing barriers for women’s economic participation in the workforce by providing access to finance for startups founded by women.
The Department is looking for input from startups to inform the design of the program.
What is ‘Boosting Female Founders’?
The Initiative will provide targeted funding and support for women engaging in innovative entrepreneurship from 2020.
The $18 million program (providing $6 million in grants over three years) will help startups founded by women to access early stage capital and overcome barriers needed to get their ideas off the ground and go global.
The program will ensure the entrepreneurial needs of diverse groups are served, including female entrepreneurs in regional areas and Indigenous founders who can face greater difficulties accessing capital.
By increasing the gender diversity of founders, the Government aims to “strengthen the performance of Australia’s startup and innovation ecosystems over the long-term and stimulate new investment and drive growth in the startup sector by co-funding women-led startups.”
How can you provide input?
Anyone with experience as an entrepreneur or a supporter of startups can make their views known and have input into designing Boosting Female Founders.
Information sought through the consultation process includes:
- challenges and barriers faced by startups led by women;
- how the Government can support female founded startups to leverage funding and support from investors;
- considerations the Government should take when determining grant guidelines, including program criteria and detailed design (eligibility, funding, activities, outcomes and evaluation).
The 5-week public consultation process will capture responses though:
- A discussion paper available to the general public through the department’s online Consultation Hub;
- Focus groups held in regional and metro locations in each state and territory: 1st Oct at Spacecubed in Perth, and 2nd Oct in Kalgoorlie.
How can you help?
Please fill out the 10-minute survey on the Consultation Hub (scroll to the bottom of the page) and encourage others to do so.
Download this 7-page PDF with more information about this initiative.
- Dell 2019 Women Entrepreneur Cities (WE Cities) Index , Dell 2019 Report
- Credit Scores of Women-Owned Businesses Rose, Revenue Dropped in 2017; Digital Boom Leaves Women Behind According to Biz2Credit Study; February 27, 2018
- Women, global trade and what it takes to succeed, 2015 Women in Global Business Report
- Women and Entrepreneurship, Wade Institute 2017 Report