39 of the coolest startups founded by women

Women may be underrepresented throughout the tech sector, but they’re building some incredible startups, apps, and products.

The folks over at Product Hunt have created and curated a collection of the best startups and products founded by inspiring women. VCs, entrepreneurs, and Product Hunt members have all weighed in on their favourites.

From uBeam’s innovative wireless charging technology to Hopscotch’s program for teaching kids how to code, the products women are making are changing the world.


Rachel Willmer had just bought an e-reader before going on vacation in 2008, but she quickly stumbled across some problems while trying to load books onto the reader. Some stores didn't carry the right format for her e-reader; some were too expensive; and others wouldn't sell her a book because she was in a different country.

Luzme solves e-book woes by letting you sign up for the books you want from the stores you want, and then emailing you when the price drops on books you want. Luzme hasn't raised any funding money yet.


Gillian Morris, Hitlist's founder.

Hitlist lets you build wishlists of places you want to travel to. When there are fare deals for those places, Hitlist will send you an alert so you can buy tickets cheap. There's a social aspect to Hotlist too: you connect via Facebook and can see where your friends are planning trips.

Founded by Gillian Morris and built by her startup TripCommon, Hitlist competes against apps like Kayak and HotelTonight.


Kiki Schirr, Fittr CMO and cofounder

Whether you're a gym rat with an everyday regimen or a couch potato looking to get some exercise, Fittr wants to help you reach your goals. You tell Fittr how in shape you are and enter tags like 'apartment' or 'lifting' to let the app know how much equipment you're working with. Fittr is available in the App Store -- you'll get a free 5-day trial, but you'll have to pay $US11.99 for the full version of the app.

Fittr raised an undisclosed seed round of funding in August from nonprofit Tampa Bay WaVE.


Sending digital invitations for an event is hard. If you use Facebook's event feature, your invites could get lost in the shuffle. E-vites are kind of boring. Hobnob solves that problem by letting users drop event details into one of their gorgeous templates and then send them out to friends via text message.

Hobnob was founded in 2014 and hasn't raised any venture capital funding.


Front CEO Mathilde Collin.

Front lets you collaborate on email responses with your team without cluttering up your inbox with a confusing set of back-and-forth responses. Front also lets you work under a group email address to collaborate on composing emails.

In August, the Y Combinator alum told VentureBeat it had already raised $US1.5 million of its $US2.5 million funding round from a group of anonymous Silicon Valley investors. Front is led by CEO Mathilde Collin.


Danielle Morrill, Mattermark CEO and cofounder.

Danielle Morrill, Kevin Morrill, and Andy Sparks are the dream team behind Mattermark. Mattermark is a data platform that helps VC firms keep tabs on up-and-coming startups. Mattermark's software lets users look at information about startups based on news stories, Twitter, SEC filings, AngelList, CrunchBase, and more.

The company has raised $US9.9 million in four rounds from investors including Great Oaks Venture Capital and Andreessen Horowitz. Danielle Morrill is Mattermark's CEO.

Maker's Row

Tanya Menendez, Maker's Row cofounder

Brooklyn-based Maker's Row wants to bring manufacturing back to the US, by offering an online marketplace that connects manufacturers with product-based businesses. Maker's Row matches up fashion designers and manufacturers.

Maker's Row raised a $US1 million seed round in August 2013 form investors including Index Ventures, Comcast Ventures, Alexis Ohanian, and Joanne Wilson.


Cynthia Schames, AbbeyPost co-founder

No matter what size you wear, if you're a woman, it's hard to always find clothes that fit just right. AbbeyPost wants to solve that problem, particularly for plus-sized women. AbbeyPost's software lets users pick the styles and the fabrics of clothing they want to wear, input their measurements, and build or find clothing that fits just right.

AbbeyPost raised its seed round of funding last year.


Erica Brescia, Bitnami cofounder

Erica Brescia is one-half of the founding team behind Bitnami, a cloud hosting platform that helps developers run the apps you use every day.

Co-founded by Brescia and Daniel Lopez and headquartered in San Francisco, Bitnami raised an undisclosed seed round in March 2013 from Peter Courture, Armando Pauker, Streamlined Ventures, Elad Gil, Diego Basch, Eric Hahn, Othman Laraki, and Y Combinator.


Control cofounder Kathryn Loewen.

Control helps businesses manage the payments they receive online from customers. Businesses can manage multiple accounts with Control on different devices (mobile on iOS or Android, or with the desktop web app).

Cofounded by Charles Phillips and Kathryn Loewen, Control is based out of Vancouver, British Columbia. While the company hasn't announced any fundraising money, it acquired mobile payments systems Pay Pad and Striped in 2014.


TheSkimm cofounders Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg.

Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg quit their jobs at NBC to launch theSkimm, a daily newsletter that gets sent to your inbox every morning with the day's top stories.

The two raised $US7.8 million in two rounds of funding from Irving Azoff, Greycroft Partners, AFSquare, Five Island Ventures, Richard Greenfield, Gordon Crawford, Troy Carter, RRE Ventures, Homebrew, and Bob Pittman.


Hopscotch founders Jocelyn Leavitt and Samantha John.

Hopscotch teaches kids how to code in a way that's fun and not intimidating. It's the first programming language that's designed for mobile, too.

Jocelyn Leavitt and Samantha John founded the company in 2011 and have received $US1.2 million in two rounds
of funding from MESA+, Kapor Capital, Collaborative Fund, and Resolute.vc.


Rachel Berry, Modiv's founder.

Modiv is a job board connecting people who are underrepresented in tech -- women and minorities in particular -- with companies that value inclusion and diversity. Startups like Mattermark and Product Hunt use Modiv to recruit. Modiv also allocates 10% of profits back to nonprofits focused on diversity.

'I grew up building (and breaking) things and strapping dolls to the back of remote control cars, so it's fair to say that diversity in STEM in general -- and tech in particular -- is something I've always been super passionate about,' Rachel Berry, Modiv's founder, says on Product Hunt.

Modiv was founded at the beginning of 2015 and has not raised VC funding yet.


Shippo cofounder Laura Behrens Wu

Shippo wants to shake up the shipping industry by making it cheaper and easier for online marketplaces and merchants to send you your stuff. Shippo's software lets e-commerce companies connect with different shipping providers to get better rates and labels at a low cost. Then, Shippo says, your favourite e-commerce stores can pass along the savings to you.

Shippo raised a $US2 million seed round in September from Fabrice Grinda, Slow Ventures, Joanne Wilson, 500 Startups, Version One Ventures, and SoftTech VC.


Frugl cofounder Suzanne Noble

On a budget but still want to find stuff to do? Frugl, a London-centric app, wants to help. Frugl curates a list of free and low-cost activities and then lets you buy tickets and get directions to events you want to go to. While it's currently available only in London, Frugl cofounder Suzanne Noble says the startup is looking to expand to more cities once it gets funding.

Frugl was founded in November 2012 and has not announced any fundraising.


WakaTime cofounder Priyanka Sharma

WakaTime helps programmers by giving them analytics about how much time they're spending coding, and how much time they're working in different programming languages.

WakaTime, cofounded by former Googler Priyanka Sharma and Alan Hamlett, hasn't announced any funding.


Hetal Pandya, EasilyDo cofounder

EasilyDo is like having your own personal assistant inside your phone. By syncing everything you'd otherwise have to check -- your email accounts, social media, and calendars -- EasilyDo reminds you of things like upcoming meetings and birthdays. It also lets you track packages and access things like your boarding pass.

Hetal Pandya and Mikael Berner cofounded EasilyDo, and the startup raised a $US4.3 million round of venture funding in December 2012 from Mayfield Fund and U.S. Venture Partners (USVP).


weeSpring founders Allyson Downey, Melissa Post (upper right), and Jack Downey (bottom right).

weeSpring is an ecommerce platform that has expecting parents and parents of newborn babies in mind. Users can ask for advice, share stories, and compare products. You can even start a registry.

weeSpring has raised $US700k in two rounds from Empire Angels and Techstars. It was cofounded by Melissa Post and Allyson and Jack Downey.

Brit + Co.

Brit + Co. founder and CEO Brit Morin.

Brit Morin is Silicon Valley's answer to Martha Stewart. The former Googler's ecommerce and DIY project startup, Brit + Co, lets users curate crafty ideas and buy monthly DIY craft kits.

Brit + Co. has raised $US7.6 million from investors like Cowboy Ventures, Yahoo's Marissa Mayer, Index Ventures, and Lerer Hippeau Ventures.


Jessica Richman is the cofounder and CEO of Y Combinator alum uBiome, a biotech startup researching the microorganisms that live inside the human body. uBiome was initially financed by crowdfunding: its 2013 IndieGogo campaign raised $US351,193 of its $US100,000 goal.

uBiome has raised $US5 million from Andreessen Horowitz, 500 Startups, and Y Combinator.


Alexa von Tobel, LearnVest's CEO and founder.

Alexa Von Tobel's LearnVest is chock-full of articles, advice, and other resources to help you become a better financial planner.

LearnVest raised $US69 million in five rounds from Northwestern Mutual, Accel Partners, American Express Ventures, and more, and was acquired this week by Northwestern Mutual for more than $US250 million.


Deena Varshavskaya, CEO of Wanelo.

Wanelo -- which stands for 'want, need, love' -- is Deena Varshavskaya's startup that lets you shop for clothes from 350,000 stores, right from your phone.

Wanelo raised $US14 million in two rounds from investors like Stan Chudnovsky, James Currier, Red Swan Ventures, Ooga Labs, Naval Ravikant, First Round, Floodgate, Forerunner Ventures, Aayush Phumbhra, and Roger Dickey.


uBeam founder and CEO Meredith Perry.

After getting stuck in a college lecture with a dead laptop and no charger, Meredith Perry decided she needed to find a solution to fix the most annoying part of mobile devices: their chargers. Her solution: uBeam, which uses ultrasound waves to wirelessly charge devices.

She's raised $US13.2 million -- and most recently a $US10 million round in October -- from investors like Andreessen Horowitz, Mark Cuban, Troy Carter, Tony Hsieh, and Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.


Jessica Mah, inDinero's product architect and CEO.

Jessica Mah is the CEO and product architect of inDinero, a startup that handles accounting and payroll management for small businesses. (She's also one of the best people to follow on Twitter, according to Marc Andreessen). inDinero has raised $US1.2 million in three rounds of funding.


Evgeniya Usmanova, cofounder of Carelulu.

Evgeniya Usmanova is the cofounder of Carelulu, an online marketplace that lets parents find and compare qualified preschools and daycares for their children, all on one platform. Parents can sort by budget, teaching philosophy or specific services they need for their kids.

Carelulu raised a $US1.7 million seed round in November from Khosla Ventures, The Startup Factory, CrunchFund, and 500 Startups.


Adora Cheung is the cofounder of home cleaning startup Homejoy. Homejoy will connect you with a background-checked cleaner, who can clean your home for $US20 an hour.

Homejoy has raised $US39.7 million in five rounds from investors including Mike Hirshland, Oliver Jung, First Round, Google Ventures, Max Levchin, and Redpoint Ventures.

Clara Labs

Clara Labs is an automated system that acts like a virtual assistant by scheduling your meetings and helping you manage your inbox. While the company hasn't raised any money yet, cofounder Maran Nelson has confirmed a funding round is in the works.


Mara Zepeda is the cofounder and CEO of Switchboard, a Portland, Oregon-based startup that cities, universities, and other communities use as a classifieds service. Switchboard has raised $US45,000 from the Portland Incubator Experiment.


True&Co founder Michelle Lam has cracked the code to finding the perfect bra -- and after filling out a questionnaire on True&Co's website, you can buy one, too. Michelle and her team created an algorithm that helps women find the best bras for their size and shape, and also enables them to design better fitting bras by using data from more than one million women.

True&Co has raised $US6 million since its founding in 2012.


Kegan Schouwenburg, cofounder and CEO of Sols.

Kegan Schouwenburg got the idea for her startup Sols back when she worked at 3D printery Shapeways, while walking around the factory floor in her black leather platform boots. Sols is a startup that 3D prints orthopaedic shoe insoles.

The startup has raised $US19.3 million from investors including Grape Arbor VC, FundersGuild, Felicis Ventures, Rothenberg Ventures, RRE Ventures, Lux Capital, and Founders Fund.


Dwell Media's Lara Deam and Michela O'Connor Abrams.

Dwell Media has been around for a decade, and it's still the arbiter of the modern home and design -- it is both a resource and store for those means. Its owner and founder is Lara Deam, and its president is Michela O'Connor Abrams.


Kate Matsudaira, Popforms' founder.

Popforms is an email newsletter packed with career advice, a blog, and a set of courses that are all intended to make you the best technical leader you can be. Kate Matsudaira is Popforms' founder.

Stitch Fix

Katrina Lake, founder and CEO of Stitch Fix.

Katrina Lake is the founder and CEO of Stitch Fix, a personal styling website. Users fill out a survey about their taste, and Stitch Fix's personal stylists curate five items of clothing and accessories that fit your budget, lifestyle, and taste. You can buy the items you want and return the ones you don't.

Stitch Fix has raised $US46.8 million, mostly recently raising a $US30 million Series C round in June 2014 from Benchmark, Western Technology Investment, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Baseline Ventures.

Share Some Style

Diane Loviglio and Gil Tolle, Share Some Style's founders.

Diane Loviglio got the idea for Share Some Style when she and Gil Tolle found themselves staring at their closets day after day, asking themselves what they should wear. Tired of their wardrobes, they enlisted the help of two stylists, who happened to be friends of a friend. Share Some Style brings your own personal stylist to you in person (if you live in one of the nine cities the startup serves), or remotely connects you.

In June 2014, Share Some Style raised a $US100,000 seed round from 500 Startups.

The RealReal

The RealReal is a luxury online resale marketplace founded by Julie Wainwright. In addition to selling Chanel, Manolo Blahnik, and Hermès clothing at up to 90% off of the retail price, The RealReal also offers paintings, drawings, and other fine art.

The RealReal has raised $US43 million from investors including Expansion Venture Capital, DBL Investors, Panarea Capital, Novel TMT Ventures, Greycroft Partners, and e.ventures.


Fiestah cofounder Putri Nurul Ida.

Planning a big event -- whether it's a class reunion or a birthday party -- can be a huge pain. Fiestah lets users compare quotes from its list of curated vendors, and then plan their events, keep track of budgets, and pay securely all on one platform.

Cofounded by former Goldman Sachs analyst Putri Nurul Ida, Fiestah raised its undisclosed seed round of funding in August 2014 from Dreamit Ventures.

Kurbo Health

Kurbo Health cofounders Thea Runyan and Joanna Strober.

Kurbo Health, cofounded by Joanna Strober and Thea Runyan, is a mobile app that helps kids and teens lose weight safely. It categorizes food using a stoplight system, in which 'red' foods are bad, 'yellow' foods are ok, and 'green' foods are good. Kurbo Health's mobile platform lets users track the food they eat, as well as the physical activity they do each day, and a trained human coach has a weekly meeting with each user to set goals.

Kurbo Health raised $US5.8 million in July from Greg Badros, Susan Wojcicki, Promus Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Data Collective, and Signia Venture Partners.

Travelling Spoon

Aashi Vel and Steph Lawrence, Travelling Spoon cofounders

Travelling Spoon wants to let you experience authentic, local cuisine while you're travelling around the world. The website connects travellers with hosts in more than 38 cities in countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam.

Cofounded by Aashi Vel and Steph Lawrence, Travelling Spoon hasn't announced any VC funding.

These women are also doing some phenomenal stuff in tech...

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.