On March 30 and 31, Female Founder Collective, a network of businesses led and supported by women and cofounded by Rebecca Minkoff and Alison Wyatt, will host its annual Female Founders Day: The Business Blueprint. It features two days of educational and empowering programming designed with the needs of female founders in mind.
The virtual event will offer workshops about building one’s brand, money management, marketing, being a leader during difficult times, and interactive boardroom meetings. The intention is to help set female entrepreneurs up for success by providing them with the tools and business blueprint they can apply to their businesses and lives.
Among the speakers are Michelle Cordeiro Grant, founder and chief executive officer of Lively; Rochelle Stewart, founder, The Syndicate and vice president, consumer tech at Silicon Valley Bank; Neeta Bhushan, founder, Global Grit; Tina Wells, founder, Elevation Tribe; Shizu Okusa, founder and CEO of Apothékary; Rachel Rodgers, CEO of Hello Seven and author of “We Should All Be Millionaires,” and Mercedes Bent, partner in Lightspeed Venture Partners.
FFC, along with Klarna, will invite female founders to enter The Big Pitcher competition. The winner of the two-part competition will receive a $10,000 grant from Klarna to help take their business to the next level. Candidates have to submit a one-minute video elevator pitch along with a short application. The deadline is at midnight, EST, tonight.
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Six up-and-coming entrepreneurs will be selected to attend a private two-hour pitch workshop and mentoring session on March 29. Working with a team of experts in the fields of retail, direct-to-consumer, finance, business and or e-commerce, these founders will learn what defines the perfect pitch and be paired with a mentor to help finesse their approach while receiving real-time feedback.
On March 30, as part of Female Founders Day: The Business Blueprint, finalists will have one minute to pitch their business idea to a panel of experts, as well as in front of the Female Founders Day community. Judges will have five minutes to ask questions and deliberate, and will reveal the winner the following day.
The judges are Natalia Brzezinksi, U.S. head of strategy, Klarna; Minkoff; Wyatt; Kelly Dill, principal at Imaginary Ventures, and Nyakio Grieco, founder of Nyakio Beauty and cofounder of Thirteen Lune.
According to Wyatt, CEO of the Female Founder Collective, the pitch competition is open to any direct-to-consumer company, which has a website or sells other retailers, within any industry and at any stage.
“We’re looking for people who are looking to accelerate their business, maybe they’re not ready for venture capital yet, or maybe they are looking for incremental exposure and maybe they’re hoping to find incredible mentorship from the judges we’re going to have present. It could be a precursor to getting a loan or getting venture capital, or even doing crowdfunding,” she said. The only main criteria is they have to have a consumer brand.
Wyatt was previously president of Girlboss and was earlier chief revenue officer of Goop.com, and executive president, publishing and brand partnerships, for Refinery29. The Female Founder Collective is her main role now. Minkoff is cofounder of Rebecca Minkoff, the accessories and ready-to-wear company.
Minkoff explained that Female Founder Collective was launched in September 2018 with the belief that there was a serious lack of female founders and with the idea that community, education and resources could help them achieve success. They’ve built a community of more than 9,000 female-founded companies, and have sponsored hundreds of digital events and several in-person events, along with panels and workshops.
Some topics that will be discussed are networking and partnership, whether it’s a collaboration or a social media partnership, teaching how to build a brand that lasts, and advice on pricing and packaging. They will also address how to attract investors, establish grit and conquer fear.
The cost for the two-day event is $39. For $60, participants can attend the two-day event and receive a copy of Minkoff’s upcoming book, “Fearless: The New Rules for Unlocking Creativity, Courage and Success.”
Wyatt said there’s never been more of a need for this kind of advice with so many women having lost their jobs and needing to restart their businesses. “So many of these retail businesses that have been hurt are trying to reestablish their footing,” she said.
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