Smashing Barriers : Manchester's Wonder Women 2019

‘Since the UKBAA Report 'UK VC & Female Founders' was launched in February 2019, closely followed by the 'Alison Rose Review of Female Entrepreneurship' in March the same year, many articles have followed describing in detail, and from a variety of angles and perspectives, the barriers that exist between Women and founding their own businesses, being taken seriously, and raising investment to scale & grow their company.’

Jess Jackson is an Investment Director at GC Angels and an amazing advocate and champion for women in business and for women accessing funding. 

We were honoured to speak on the 'Smashing Barriers’ panel about raising finance through kickstarter (thank you so much to all of you!) held at Coutts in Manchester  - an event organised by Jess in partnership with Praetura. 

Women are less likely to secure funding (90% less likely) compared with male founders, and get 1% share of VC capital.

This is a shocking statistic and the ‘Smashing Barrier’ event is tackling this from the ground up. ‘Smashing Barriers’ is open to everyone, a supportive environment where you can ask questions, get advice and listen to people who have been through the funding process. It is honestly one of the best events we have been to and Jess’ knowledge, experience and, above all, kindness all make for a wonderful event.  

The panel funding topics ranged from raising via Kickstarter through to VC funding. On the panel with us was Chloe Barrett who has an incredible EdTech company called Immersify Education which is revolutionising dentistry. Alongside Chloe were the wonderful Dr Lucy Buckley and Kobi McCardle co-founders of the amazing Dr Fertility whose mission is to support anyone on their fertility journey through providing fertility education and products. 

Once the panel had concluded there was a chance for guests to pitch their business. One of the pitchers was Stephanie Buttery from Chu-lo who create amazing drinks inspired by Chūhai which became a favourite for Stephanie whilst she was deployed in Japan with the British Navy. Grace Vella founded the brilliant Miss Kick in 2018 which came from her experience of being a female football player and there not being representation, so Grace wanted to change this and empower girls. Miss Kick’s mission is to ‘create a world where every girl, regardless of their background or experiences, has the opportunity to feel inspired and benefit from football.’

The event ended with drinks, canapes and networking. It was a truly brilliant event and it just showed even more how much support there is in business at whatever stage you are at and people are always willing to help. If you need any help, just ask.