Female-fronted tech start-up fund Women Who Tech has announced the ten finalists for its Women Startup Challenge Europe HealthTech, with the winner set to be revealed in ceremony in Paris on 7 October 2019.
The initiative is supported by Johnson & Johnson Innovation Laboratories (JLABS) and Craig Newmark Philanthropies, and is co-hosted by the Office of the Mayor of Paris. It aims to provide funding for early-stage women-led health tech start-ups that are based in Europe or have a strong European presence.
The ten finalists will pitch to a jury panel of investors for the chance to win an equity-free cash grant of $50,000. All finalists will receive fundraising pitch coaching and one-on-one investor mentoring.
The panel of judges includes Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices senior director of global markets and external innovation Sarah Fisher, Deputy Mayor of Paris Jean-Louis Missika, and Techstars managing director Eamonn Carey.
Women Who Tech founder Allyson Kapin said: “By 2040, $25 trillion will be spent annually on healthcare, yet only 9.7% of investor funding goes to women-led HealthTech startups. The Women Startup Challenge is fostering a culture and inclusive economy to accelerate women founders who are developing solutions to the biggest health problems, directly impacting people’s lives.
“The reality is that the playing field for women isn’t level when it comes to investor funding, and we intend to tackle this gap head-on by providing these founders access to capital, resources and a top-tier investor network.”
The Women Startup Challenge Europe HealthTech received over 250 entries, 50% of which came from women of colour.
Craig Newmark Philanthropies founder Craig Newmark said: “It’s crucial we have people with diverse backgrounds solving the industry’s biggest problems, which is why programs such as the Women Startup Challenge are so important.”
Among the finalists are Cardiomo, an AI-based cardiac patient monitoring platform, and Luna Womb, a company harnessing low-level light therapy to increase fertility.