Women account for one third of technology employees in Israel, but the proportion of women CEOs and entrepreneurs is far lower. One of the groups attempting to redress this situation, the Women Founders Forum (WFF), is planning a January 2017 launch of the third class of a startup accelerator for companies headed by a woman.
Sivan Shamri Dahan, a managing general partner at the Qumra Capital growth fund, and Qualcomm Ventures Israel director Merav Weinryb founded WFF. Shamri Dahan and Weinryb say, "Every year, we see more and more startups led by women, but the numbers are still small. We want to create a situation in which brilliant women with excellent ideas will unhesitatingly and without fear jump on the entrepreneurship bandwagon, succeed, and make themselves a model for imitation, in the knowledge that they have broad support from both investors and their colleagues."
10 startups will participate in the program's next class. 16 companies took part in the two previous classes, and have raised an aggregate total of over $20 million to date. The accelerator program, which is free of charge, operates on the SOSA site.
The list of past participants in the accelerator includes Feelter, founded by entrepreneur Smadar Landau. The company announced a $4 million financing round on Monday for the purpose of developing an algorithm designed for e-commerce websites. The algorithm connects all the comments posted about a given product on websites and social networks, and displays them to potential buyers.
Another startup in the program is Moshit Yaffe's Zirra, which has raised $1.6 million to date. The company has developed technology that collects and analyzes information about the startup industry in Israel and worldwide.
In cooperation with EY Israel, the WFF will hold a conference for women entrepreneurs and investors next week, with the participation of Kira Radinsky, founder of SalesPredict, which was acquired by eBay, Shamri Dahan, Weinryb, Michal Braverman-Blumenstyk from Microsoft, Dr. Dorit Dor from Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: CHKP), Riki Drori from Google, Vered Raviv Schwarz from Fiver, Miri Zilman-Ziv from EY, and other senior industry figures, who will discuss the promotion of women in the entrepreneurship industry.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on November 10, 2016
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