Startups founded by women are doing way better, says top firm First Round Capital

Deena Varshavskaya WaneloWaneloDeena Varshavskaya, the founder and CEO of digital mall Wanelo

Female founders are overshadowing their male peers, according to a report on Wednesday by First Round Capital, a venture capital firm that provides seed funding to startups.

The firm has invested in notable startups like Wanelo, Square, Warby Parker, Refinery29 and most famously, Uber, but counted the ride-hailing service as an outlier in its analysis.

After examing a decade’s worth of data from 300 portfolio companies, First Round Capital learned that startup teams with at least one female founder performed 63 per cent better than all male teams. The data also showed that women are present in the top ranks of their ten most valuable companies.

“We’re thrilled to see [the data],” partner Josh Kopelman told Forbes. “It could be that women are a net positive on a founding team from a diversity of thought and experience perspective — and the market doesn’t recognise that yet.”

Kopelman also said that this may be due in part to a higher expectation of female-founded teams to rally for funding in the first place.

Either way, it’s good news for the tech community. According to a CNNMoney analysis, only 24 women reside as CEOs in the top 500 companies.

While First Round acknowledged that their report is a “small subset” of the larger economy, it hopes to provide some insights of what successful seed-funding looks like.

“Fortune favours the young,” the data also revealed of the startup ecosystem. The average entrepreneur who receives funding from First Round is 34.5 years old, but those under 25 performed 30 per cent above the norm.

Those who attended an Ivy-branded school also tended to do a whopping 220 per cent better than average — and alums of top-notch tech companies like Google and Amazon tended to secure pre-money valuations that were twice as large as those of their peers.

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