Victorian startup agency LaunchVic’s ongoing support for female founders is continuing with a new grants program for organisations to run pre-accelerator programs for women entrepreneurs.
Grants of up to $300,000 are available to support programs offering women founders with the advice, support and networks required to build a minimum viable product and find their first customer.
LaunchVic is already backing female founders financially through its $10 million Alice Anderson fund. The angel sidecar fund, launched in mid-2021 co-invests between $50,000 and $300,000 in early-stage startups.
LaunchVic CEO Dr Kate Cornick said her agency’s upcoming Ecosystem Mapping Report will show a third of Victorian startups now have at least one woman founder, up from 20% in 2020, but that figure is still outpaced by the growth of male-only firms.
“The latest funding reflects LaunchVic’s enduring commitment to building the pipeline of women-founded companies and ensuring a diverse startup ecosystem,” she said.
“We’re pump priming the Victorian startup sector with the next generation of women entrepreneurs and ensuring, through initiatives like The Alice Anderson Fund, that they receive support at every stage of growth.”
Since 2017, LaunchVic programs have upskilled more than 11,600 budding entrepreneurs.
Ivy Nguyen, cofounder of ReciMe, a recipe discovery app billed as the “Spotify for home cooks” is one of them. She recently completed LaunchVic’s CivVic Labs pre-accelerator, then went on to raise $500,000 in pre-seed funding.
“The CivVic Labs program helped us unpack the problems with cultural and health food accessibility,” she said
We were able to apply our learnings to better develop a product that inspires young people to cook healthy meals at home and embrace cultural foods.”
ReciMe is also a portfolio company of the Alice Anderson Fund, which has now backed 21 women-led startups in 18 months.
Applications for the grants are open to local and international programs looking to support women in Victoria.
More on the pre-accelerator grants program at launchvic.org/grants/