Guild Education; All Raise VC Summit; Ethel's Club; Inspired VC & The Femstreet membership

Your weekly Newsletter on Women in Tech and Venture Capital

WOW! What a week it’s been!

Welcome to issue No. 111. The top two articles from the last week's issue were:  

This week, we’ve launched the Femstreet Membership. We want you to not only be the most informed founder, funder or startup operator in the room (with this weekly newsletter) but also have access to the tools and network you need to thrive in tech and VC over the long term. Read more about why we are launching a paid membership and why you should join today.

Sign up for just $10 a month or $100 a year.

For more information, read our list of FAQs here.



Join the Femstreet Winter Warmer

We thought it’s time to get together one more time in real life before the year ends. We’ve teamed up with our friends at Huckletree to host a Femstreet Winter Warmer on December 9 in London. I hope to see many of you there!


Insights

The education software startup Guild Education announced the close of its $157 million Series D round, making it one of the few female-led companies to join the elusive unicorn club this year.

Alexa von Tobel's Inspired VC firm just raised $200 Million.

Social network for motherhood Peanut raises $5M, and expands to include women trying to conceive.

Inside Ethel's Club, the new private club for people of colour with a 4,300-strong waitlist.

Diversity VC set up an internship programme to fix VC’s diversity problem.

What Serena Williams has learned from venture investing.

PitchBook and All Raise released All In, a report about women in the VC ecosystem highlights global and US-focused trends surrounding female-founded companies and female-led VC funds throughout the last decade.

This week 600 female US VCs got together in Oakland for the All Raise VC Summit.


People

Natalie Sandman joined Spark as an early-stage investor.

Courtney Buie Lipkin joined Susa Ventures as a Partner.

Amanda Robson, formerly Norwest Venture Partners, joined Cowboy Ventures.


From the Investor

VC Cyan Banister, early investor in Uber and SpaceX, on her path into venture and who decides what at Founders Fund (and much more).
— Cyan Banister / Founders Fund


On why the 'smart' future of cybersecurity might lie in 'dumb' hardware.
— Evgenia Plotnikova / Dawn Capital


A modern guide to living in NYC and 10 easy steps to conquering friends, finance and apartments with mice.
— Sarah McBride / Shrug Capital


Navigating after takeoff: What startups should know about how best to build out the business you pitched through proof-of-concepts (POCs).
— Amy Burr / JetBlue Ventures


Why your GTM strategy matters.
— Jodi Sherman Jahic / Aligned Partners


Are you a female angel investor and/or an angel with a history of supporting female founders?

Founders in our community frequently ask us for introductions to angels and we decided to put a list together. Our hope with this list is that founders in our community can more easily find investors (female and male) that have a history of supporting female founders and can make meaningful connections with you. Please add yourself to the Femstreet list of angel investors by filling out this short form here.


From the Founder & Operator

“It's time for workplace policies to reflect the family structures and values of the future: giving equal benefits to primary and secondary parents, and all genders, regardless of how the child enters the family. I took maternity leave twice while leading my (now public) company. Here's what I learned.
— Katrina Lake / Stitchfix



How to get more people to read (and share) your content.
— Natalier Sportelli / Lerer Hippeau


“When You’re A Black Female Founder You’ll Hear A Lot More No’s. Don’t Let That Stop You.”

Abadesi on learnings after three years of running Hustle Crew.


Why this founder hid her pregnancy as a startup CEO.
— Sage Franch / Crescendo

“To girls everywhere, may you know how much power you have to change the world.”

Glossier CEO and founder Emily Weiss paid tribute to her fellow honorees at the TIME 100 Next event on Thursday in New York City.

Alexis Ohanian wrote the TIME 100 Next article on Emily Weiss.


Upcoming Events

🗓️November 21-22 Helsinki
Are you at Slush? - I’ll be moderating a panel on distributed teams with Sandra Uddback, VP of Data Acquisition at Mapillary, who has built Mapillary’s 50-person team across 18 countries to function remotely from day one. See you there 👋

🗓️November 21 Berkeley
How to Build the Future with Nicole Quinn of Lightspeed

🗓️November 21 San Francisco
The Violet Society: Startup Founder Fellowship Showcase

🗓️November 27 London
Female Founders: The Drivers of Corporate Innovation and Industry Disruption, in Partnership with WeWork Labs

🗓️November 28 London
Women in VC Negotiation Workshop

🗓️November 29 London
Next Gen Consumer by Talis Capital (Meet me there)

🗓️December 3 New York
Effective Communication for Women in Tech by Oscar Health


Thanks for being part of Femstreet this Sunday. If you enjoyed this newsletter so far but you aren’t subscribed yet or want to become an official member, sign up here.

If you are a female investor, founder or startup operator, we'd love to feature your content.
Are you currently fundraising? Share the details with us here.


👋Comments, questions, tips? Send me a note!

Curated in London by Sarah Nöckel, Founder/Editor in Chief & B2B SaaS Investor at Dawn Capital - sarah@femstreet.com

Follow Femstreet on Instagram

Get involved in the Femstreet membership

Want to learn about our first premium product? Read on.

I am pleased to announce the launch of the Femstreet membership: a premium version of our platform, the goal of which is to create a curated community with access to the best content, connections and opportunities for women in tech and VC. 


Femstreet's 2 year anniversary in September marked an important milestone in our journey. I published a post about how far we’ve come and what we’ve learned: 

I’ve built a newsletter, a Slack group, a brand and an events programme. Femstreet turns two and these are the four things I learned: Niche doesn’t mean small. Focus. Genuine personal brand is important. Create for the best readers, not all the readers.


Femstreet has grown from a newsletter to a global community for women in tech and venture capital. We also hang out IRL now, with over 10 community events held world over just this year, with many more to come.

I've loved investing my heart, time and money into building Femstreet and preparing for this next chapter. Having met and listened to many incredible Femstreet supporters, I now have more ideas than ever about how to further our impact. However, in order to make good on our mission, we will need a solid and sustainable business model.  

Since its inception, the mission of Femstreet has been the same: 

  1. To become the go-to place for news on women in tech and venture (with our newsletter)

  2. To connect founders and funders and help more women navigate business challenges with no-fluff advice (with our online community on Slack & offline events). 

In this next chapter, we want to double down on these two things and do them really well.

Our current invite-only community on Slack consists of 750 highly engaged members, of which more than 45% are active every week. 80% of the conversations are taking place in DMs. Yes — people are connecting directly and meaningfully! Our members use our Slack channel to ask for advice, share their product propositions and pitch decks, post jobs, events, and wins–both big and small.

There is so much happening on Slack and we are constantly trying to improve our members’ experience. To make all the activity on Slack more digestible, we have created these weekly highlights for our members, a curation of the best content and exchanges in our community over the past three months.
We believe that our Slack channel has been successful because it’s focused on two core principles that unite our community: 

Helping others

Because we are all in this together. When our members support each other, our community strengthens and progresses. We want to enable you all to meaningfully converse and connect with each other. 

Quality over quantity

Instead of substantially expanding our online community, we prefer to have a highly engaged base of 1,000 members for whom our platform is a daily habit. We care about curated, high-quality content, and a continuous and consistent exchange of value.


Alongside these principles, we want to embrace a growth mindset and find ways to serve our community better. What if we connected in person more? What if we were able to get more of you in front of the right industry experts, investors, or potential customers? What if we can actually help you hire talent or land the job of your dreams in tech or VC? 
To do all this right, we need time, effort and resources. Besides, as a VC, I know how much productivity will be unlocked with some funding, enabling us to make Femstreet the golden source for women in tech and VC.

So what is the next step and what does it mean for you?

Introducing the Femstreet Membership: an opportunity to tap into and be part of the growth of our curated community. 

We want you to not only be the most informed founder, funder or startup operator in the room, but also have access to the tools and network you need to thrive in tech and VC over the long term.


What benefits does this membership have? We are excited to offer our membership community the following: 

  • Access to the community - We currently have members from top tier investment and entrepreneurial ecosystems all over the world. Tap into the community to receive and share advice, resources and learnings with fellow investors, operators and founders. 

  • Weekly member’s briefing - In addition to our Sunday newsletter (which will always be free), subscribers will receive an additional curated Members Briefing with community highlights — an efficient and effective way to keep up with all the amazing engagement and activity on Slack. 

  • Live Q&A - Opportunities to participate in subscriber-only live Q&As and mentoring sessions with experts held on Substack. Members have their say on who we bring in to these sessions.

  • Fundraising & investment - Looking for funding or to invest in female-led businesses? We will showcase investment opportunities every week to facilitate connectivity between founders and funders. 

  • Career opportunities & people directory - Access and post-startup jobs, VC investment roles and take advantage of our member’s directory.

Events will continue to be open to all. Existing Slack members have already been informed and will be given time to upgrade.
And hey guys/men, this isn’t just by women for women–it’s about women. Having inclusive discussions and making diverse connections with everyone is critical to our mission. 


Sign up for just $10 a month or $100 a year.

For more information, read our list of FAQs here.


The first subscriber-only post will be sent out to official Femstreet members next week. I am hugely excited to embark on the next chapter of Femstreet and hope you will join me as we continue to build this community and realise our shared vision. Your support means everything.

Hugs,
Sarah

How LPs evaluate new fund managers; Women own just 11% of founder and employee equity; Advice for young engineers; Bumble and sister apps are now worth $3B

Your weekly Newsletter on Women in Tech and Venture Capital

Welcome to issue No. 110. The top two articles from the last week's issue were:  

  • Why a top VC and a former LinkedIn exec think hobbies are the future of commerce.

  • How to run effective board meetings.


From the age of 8 to 17, I used to train three to five times a week for track and field in my hometown in Germany. Sometimes I cried before my training because I didn’t want to run again in the summer heat or simply do things I wasn’t good at. My parents would have been ok with me to just stop track & field, but I kept pushing myself. I ended up specialising in hurdles and sprints (because I was damn good at it and enjoyed it so so much) and of course increased my training hours. My coach was a woman who taught me so much about persistence and discipline. She once told me that even if I love running sprints and I am the fastest girl in my state at the age of 12, I need to be prepared to run a marathon in life and put myself into uncomfortable situations every day. I still hate long-distance running but I consciously try to do more of the things I actually feel uncomfortable with. Do you have a story like that? I’d love to hear it!

So as a former athlete, reading the story about runner Mary Cain in the New York Times really touched me. Her male coaches were convinced she had to get “thinner, and thinner, and thinner.” Then her body started breaking down.

"We need more women in power. Part of me wonders if I'd worked with more female psychologists, nutritionists, and coaches, where I'd be today…For years, I felt broken and alone- I waited, yet no one reach out to help. Now I am ok. But the system isn’t. And I can’t stay silent.''


Insights
 

Blackstone takes a controlling stake in owner of dating app bumble as Badoo’s Andrey Andreev sells his stake in Bumble owner MagicLab to Blackstone, valuing the dating apps at $3B. Bumble Founder Whitney Wolfe Herd negotiated this deal while 8 months pregnant (this might be the largest transaction involving a solo woman founder) and will take over as MagicLab CEO, retaining most of her ownership.
Blackstone is looking to introduce Bumble into new territories and support its efforts to become a complete social media service, expanding Bizz, BFF and the brand’s offline meetups. Exciting times ahead!


A study by Carta and #Angels shows that women own just 11% of founder and employee equity, and hold 26 cents in equity for every dollar men own.

Our friends at Elpha raised a $1.1m seed round to create a professional network for women.

For this black female founder, it took 250 meetings to get funding


People

Cack Wilhelm, former Partner at Accomplice, joins IVP as a Partner.

Caryn Marooney, Facebook’s former VP of communications, joins Coatue Ventures as a General Partner.


From the Investor

Planning your firm’s next big event such as an LP Meeting and CEO Summit? Here are lessons from planning Lerer Hippeau’s 200-person Annual Summit.
— Stephanie Manning / Lerer Hippeau


The #1 tactic VCs can do to see more diverse dealflow.
— Jessica Lin / Work-Bench


There is a fundamental, structural explanation for why VCs’ and startup founders’ interests often diverge. Here’s why venture capital is so misaligned and what you can do about it as a founder.
— Jodi Sherman Jahic / Aligned Partners


Which investments generate the greatest value in venture: Consumer or Enterprise? Turns out the vast majority of value from M&A has come from enterprise co’s since 1995 — (>2x consumer!) Portfolio value creation in enterprise is driven by a cohort of exits, while value creation in consumer is driven by large, individual exits. What does all of this mean for venture investors?
— Hillary Cook / Sapphire Ventures



On batting average and life in tech/startups.

'When you’re a player and you start to believe everyone else is hitting great and you aren’t, it’s natural to feel like you’re failing.'
— Aileen Lee / Cowboy Ventures


How LPs evaluate new fund managers on everything from first meeting to portfolio construction to fees and carry.
— Lisa Edgar / Top Tier Capital Partners 


Why the next professional network will look nothing like Linkedin.
— Brianne Kimmel / Work Life Ventures



On venture capital trends, VC firm differentiation, and nonobvious mistakes for VC fund managers to avoid. 
— Beezer Clarkson / Sapphire Ventures


On persistence when fundraising and how to prioritise your time.
— Elizabeth Yin / Hustle Fund


We teamed up with Product Hunt to amplify the powerful voices of female founders, investors and operators with a startup story to tell. Have an idea for a story? Share it with us here and get featured on PH.


From the Founder & Operator

I recently celebrated one year at Stripe. It's my first job out of college, and perhaps the best one I could have found. Here are some things I've learned, with advice for the young engineer in mind.
— Suzanne Wang / Stripe



A behind-the-scenes look into culture at Sqreen.
— Alison Eastaway / Sqreen


I’m paying my employees to use their phones less. Here’s why.
— Mathilde Collin / Front



Mirror, the fitness startup that brings boutique fitness classes home with high-tech mirrors, recently announced it has secured $34 million in Series B financing. This week Brynn Putnam, Founder & CEO of Mirror, talked to CNBC on the growth of the company’s at-home fitness screen as well as expanding the product beyond just fitness.


What’s your favourite female-founded DTC brand? I’d say my favourite is Outdoor Voices.


Upcoming Events


🗓️November 12-13 San Francisco
All Raise VC Summit

🗓️November 14 London
Beautystack Hosts: Women in Tech Showcase

🗓️November 15 London
Next Level: Business Growth Conference 2019 by Blooming Founders

🗓️November 21-22 Helsinki
Slush - I’ll be moderating a panel on distributed teams with Sandra Uddback, VP of Data Acquisition at Mapillary, who has built Mapillary’s 50-person team across 18 countries to function remotely from day one. 

🗓️November 27 London
Female Founders: The Drivers of Corporate Innovation and Industry Disruption, in Partnership with WeWork Labs

🗓️November 28 London
Women in VC Negotiation Workshop

🗓️November 29 London
Next Gen Consumer by Talis Capital (Meet me there)


Resources


Thanks for being part of Femstreet this Sunday. If you enjoyed this newsletter so far but you aren’t subscribed yet, sign up for a free subscription.

If you are a female investor, founder or startup operator, we'd love to feature your content.
Are you currently fundraising? Share the details with us here.

Follow Femstreet on Instagram


👋Comments, questions, tips? Send me a note!

Curated in London by Sarah Nöckel, Founder/Editor in Chief & B2B SaaS Investor at Dawn Capital - sarah@femstreet.com

How to run effective board meetings; #Angels; Essential elements for great story telling & More

Your weekly Newsletter on Women in Tech and Venture Capital

Welcome to issue No. 109. The top two articles from the last week's issue were:  


Insights 

Slack investor Sarah Cannon of Index Ventures backs Slack competitor Quill.

The Berlin-based Femtech startup Inne comes out of stealth with $8.8M in funding and gives a first glimpse of a hormone-tracking subscription product for fertility-tracking and natural contraception.

Meet The Wonder: The ultimate members-only family space.

Mathilde Collin of Front pays employees $200 a month to reduce their phone screen time.

Ethena is making customized sexual harassment training that it says employees won’t hate (or forget).

Why Kirsten Green and a former LinkedIn exec think hobbies are the future of commerce.

A new analysis by Boston Consulting Group shows that if women and men around the world participated equally as entrepreneurs, global GDP could ultimately rise by approximately 3% to 6%, boosting the global economy by $2.5 trillion to $5 trillion.


From the Investor

Five years ago five Twitter alumnae and one current executive banded together to invest in startups as #Angels. Last year they were joined by F7—a group of seven former and current Facebookers—and a group of 10 women who worked at Uber and have since gone into venture at separate firms, sharing deals and opportunities across their network. With more women coming into liquidity through this year’s IPOs, could there soon be more groups taking shape? Read more on how women from Twitter, Facebook, and Uber are teaming up to fund Silicon Valley’s future.


6 Demand Gen playbooks from top enterprise startups.
— Priyanka Somrah / Work-Bench

Do you get enough value out of your board of directors? Here’s how to run effective board meetings.
— Ines Streimelweger / Creandum

On why your data science tool hasn’t made machine learning easier (yet).
— Kaitlyn Henry / OpenView Partners


European investors are now hyped up about something called ‘VC as a platform’. What can you expect from a VC with a platform approach as a founder? Here are 6 questions to ask your potential investor to get more from them.
— Pauliina Martikainen / Maki.vc


We teamed up with Product Hunt to amplify the powerful voices of female founders, investors and operators with a startup story to tell. Have an idea for a story? Share it with us here and get featured on PH.


From the Founder & Operator

Code reviews at Google play an important role as an engineering practice. Even though the code review process looks similar to code reviews at Microsoft, there are some Google specifics that allow for a particular lightweight code review process. Here is how code reviews work at Google.
— Michaela Greiler / Microsoft


“I care about hiring the absolute best people who have the right skill set, a passion for our product, and desire to contribute to building a healthy and fun company culture – and those people could be anywhere.”

Why I’m building a 100% remote company.
— Sarah Sled / Blush



Here is a 6-step approach this founder used to raise a $4 million seed round led by Andreessen Horowitz.
— Hayley Leibson / Lunchclub


“But iterating is fundamentally different from creation, and its urgency is greatly minimized. Having worked on my own projects and initiatives in the past, nothing quite slaps you across the face like the looming threat of imminent demise.”

Why I left my dream job as a Product Manager at Twitter.
Yehong Zhu / Twitter


The three essential elements for great storytelling.
— Nicole Kahn / WeWork


Career advice from a UC Berkeley Venture Capital professor.
Patricia Mou / Stitch Fix


Want to connect with fellow founders, funders and experts in our community? Request your invite to the Femstreet Slack channel with a link to your Linkedin profile.

Eligibility criteria: You must be a subscriber for at least three months and you must have a minimum 60% open rate. We've got a waitlist and will add people in batches every few weeks and it may take some time.

Join Femstreet on Slack


Upcoming Events

🗓️November 5 San Francisco
Female Founders, Funders and First Employees Happy Hour with Amazon AWS

🗓️November 6 & 7 New York
The Riveter Summit - Women building the future

🗓️November 9 New York
Founders & Funders Summit - Use the code FEMSTREET10 for 10% off.

🗓️November 12-13 San Francisco
All Raise VC Summit

🗓️November 28 London
Women in VC Negotiation Workshop


Resources


Thanks for being part of Femstreet this Sunday. We recently asked a few of our readers what they value the most about Femstreet. We can always improve but are pretty proud of the responses we received:

“Tech can only fix its diversity and inclusion problem if we first have transparency about the state of play and share more information about female role models from all backgrounds to encourage and inspire the next generation. Femstreet has stepped in to play that essential role of information sharing. The publication and the Slack community have helped Atomico as a firm connect with a diverse group of individuals and gain new insights. The entire tech ecosystem is better with Femstreet.”
-
Tom Wehmeier, Partner and Head of Insights at Atomico.

“As a startup founder, Femstreet's newsletter is a weekly source of inspiration, a breath of fresh air,  a motivational oasis in a desert of hustle. Sarah manages to source content that never feels "deja vu" and makes readers think deeply. Sharing the perspectives of female investors, operator and founders is not just nice to have. Tech needs powerful platforms to allow the voices of this diverse group of women to be heard loud and clear. Femstreet is playing an active role in building a better future for entrepreneurs and VCs alike.”
-
Marie Outtier, Co-founder & CEO at Aiden.ai


You can read a few more here. If you enjoyed this newsletter so far but you aren’t subscribed yet, sign up for a free subscription.

If you are a female investor, founder or startup operator, we'd love to feature your content.
Are you currently fundraising? Share the details with us here.


👋Comments, questions, tips? Send me a note!

Curated in London by Sarah Nöckel, Founder/Editor in Chief & B2B SaaS Investor at Dawn Capital - sarah@femstreet.com

Kirsten Green on being open-minded; The Yes; How to onboard your first 500 employees; Tips for PMs

Your weekly Newsletter on Women in Tech and Venture Capital

This is issue No. 108. The top two articles from the last week's issue were:  


Insights 

Why Jill Woodworth, the chief financial officer of newly-public fitness equipment maker Peloton, has sympathy for WeWork’s management: “When I look at how quickly the market sentiment can change and companies don’t live up to expectations, it’s absolutely gut-wrenching for management.” Hmn. Do you agree?

A study finds female CFOs brought in $1.8 Trillion more than male peers.

More than two years after Julie Bornstein  — Stitch Fix’s  former chief operating officer, left the subscription-based personal styling service only months before its initial public offering, she’s taking the wraps off her first independent venture. The Yes, an AI-powered shopping platform, came out of stealth this week and has already raised $30 million in venture capital funding ahead of its launch next year.


From the Investor

How (and why) we gather feedback from our CEOs.
— Bethany Crystal/ Union Square Ventures


On the evolution of the customer data stack and the rise of +Ops.
— Jessica Lin/ Work-Bench


On owning your destiny, overcoming setbacks and the importance of being a nimble investor.

“Be open-minded to what the journey is & allow it to unfold. You have to have goals to keep moving forward but don't get so caught up in what the goal is that you miss what's in front of you.”
— Kirsten Green/ Forerunner Ventures

Here is a guide to strategic planning to make sure your team is aligned and is rowing in the same direction. 
— Sarah Hodges/ Pillar VC


NPS is the easiest, most straightforward way to measure consumer sentiment can be seen as a proxy for retention. But what's a good NPS in CPG?
— Aditi Dash/ CircleUp Growth Partners


What it takes to succeed at a top VC firm.
— Dani Grant/ Union Square Ventures.


We teamed up with Product Hunt to amplify the powerful voices of female founders, investors and operators with a startup story to tell. Have an idea for a story? Share it with us here and get featured on PH.


From the Founder & Operator

A scalable plan for onboarding your first 500 employees.
— Amanda Mulay/ Lerer Hippeau


Natasha Lytton of Seedcamp on 7 things startup marketers today need to know today to build their marketing function in the right way.


Tips for founders at their first Product Manager jobs.
— Hannah Yang/ Oscar Health


5 ways to optimise team performance without going full agile.
— Daniela Petruzalek/ GoCardless

Must read for Product Managers: To stay competitive, product folks need to be even more diligently attuned to a fledgeling product’s lovability — not just viability. Here are a few lessons in building Minimum Lovable Products.
— Jiaona “JZ” Zhang/ WeWork



Want to connect with fellow founders, funders and experts in our community? Request your invite to the Femstreet Slack channel with a link to your Linkedin profile.

Eligibility criteria: You must be a subscriber for at least three months and you must have a minimum 60% open rate. We've got a waitlist and will add people in batches every few weeks and it may take some time.

Join Femstreet on Slack


Upcoming Events

🗓️October 28 London
Happy Hour at The Wing London (I will try to be there too!)

🗓️October 28 New York
Access New York - The Female Founders Alliance

🗓️October 30 Munich
FTL Speaker Night - How mentoring can supercharge your career

🗓️November 5 San Francisco
Female Founders, Funders and First Employees Happy Hour with Amazon AWS

🗓️November 9 New York
Founders & Funders Summit - Use the code FEMSTREET10 for 10% off.

🗓️November 12-13 San Francisco
All Raise VC Summit



Resources


Thanks for being part of Femstreet. If you enjoyed this newsletter so far but you aren’t subscribed yet, sign up for a free subscription and forward to your friends and colleagues.

If you are a female investor, founder or startup operator, we'd love to feature your content.
Are you currently fundraising? Share the details with us here.


👋Comments, questions, tips? Send me a note!

Curated in London by Sarah Nöckel, Founder/Editor in Chief & B2B SaaS Investor at Dawn Capital - sarah@femstreet.com

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