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Milwaukee, St. Louis, and Kansas City lead the Midwest in first fundings of female-founded companies

A new report signals that St. Louis, Kansas City, and Milwaukee excel compared to the rest of the Silicon Prairie when it comes to first fundings of female-founded companies.

The report, published by the Center for American Entrepreneurship and Research Director Ian Hathaway, details the pathway for many early-stage companies and the continued relative scarcity of fundings of female-led teams in the region.

Hathaway’s report explains that female-founded companies received only 16% of first financings from 2005-2017. The report, however, strikes an optimistic tune because more recent data suggests that first financings for female founders are increasing, as evidenced by significantly more in 2017 than in 2005.

Based on Hathaway’s data and report, the leading community in the Midwest for financing female-founded companies is Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Female-founded companies received 23% percent of Milwaukee’s fundings (#2 in the country) during the 2005-2017 period. Milwaukee’s percentage of female-founded company fundings jumped to 40% (#4) between 2016 and 2017. This effort in Milwaukee to increase funding of female-founded companies includes startup stars such as PatientCare (Jane Cooper), WellIntel (Marian Singer), and Alinea Engine (Carol Vance).

Other communities in the Midwest are showing strides in funding of female-founded companies, though Milwaukee is the clear Midwest leader. The good news is that trends suggest that more women are being funded in the region. For example, over the last two years, both St. Louis and Kansas City showed up with Milwaukee in the top 20 nationally. St. Louis had 38% (#5) of first fundings to female founded companies, and Kansas City had 22% (#16).

Click on the link to read Hathaway’s blog entry: https://www.brookings.edu/blog/the-avenue/2019/03/07/which-cities-lead-the-nation-for-women-founding-venture-backed-startups/

Visit the following link to read the full report: http://www.startupsusa.org/women-founded-venture-backed-startups/Report_Final.pdf

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