A new look at gender diversity in the VC ecosystem

At Microsoft, we believe, and know, that when we see a diversity of perspectives, backgrounds and experiences come together, we see greater success. This holds true whether within a team or across a portfolio and is what fuels our passion for promoting diversity and equal access to opportunity everywhere we work.

Today we’re proud to be partnering with PitchBook and All Raise in launching a new report that looks at the latest data and trends for gender diversity in the VC ecosystem - All In – Women in the VC Ecosystem. Together with Goldman Sachs’s Launch with GS program, Microsoft for Startups is a proud sponsor and contributor to the report, which shines a light on improving trends for women as both founders and VCs, while highlighting the gaps that persist.

women in VC Ecosystem

Analyzing the very latest investment data available, this new report delves into current investment trends across the US, looking at how valuations, investment sizes, time to exit and other measures differ by gender, as well as the impact women have as investors on the entrepreneurial gender gap. The report also highlights interesting findings on the most welcoming cities across the US for female founders and CEOs, as well as the sectors that see the most success in fundraising.

As part of the wealth of research and analysis that went into the finished report, Microsoft for Startups was able to sit down with award-winning researcher, Dr. Dana Kanze, Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior at the London Business School, to talk about some of the challenges female founders face when fundraising and how they can be addressed. Dr. Kanze laid out some of the findings of a seven-year field study she carried out with colleagues which uncovered meaningful differences between the types of questions VCs posed to female and male founders, which in turn contribute to the different outcomes female and male founders arrive at in their quest for funding.

Dr Dana Kanze

We also explored in the report our own research on this topic, conducted with Hall & Partners, looking at the personal experiences shared by female tech founders around the world, identifying additional layers of complex barriers such as the strength and openness of professional networks, which affect a business’s growth potential.

For the complete report, as well as the Q&A with Dr. Kanze and myself, please visit All In – Women in the VC Ecosystem.

Noga Tal is Global Head of Partnerships at Microsoft for Startups. In her role she’s focused on building the company’s relationships with startup-enabling organizations, ranging from accelerators and incubators, to investors and innovation hubs.