Foundations in Startup Investing – Gender Lens

Foundations in Startup Investing

Investing with a Gender Lens

In this free, week-long course you’ll learn the foundations of investing and how you can evaluate potential investments with a gender-smart perspective that promotes inclusion, safety, equity and belonging.

Supported in part by the Women and Non-Binary Impact Network for Venture Capital.

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What is Gender Lens Investing?

Gender Lens investing, also known as “gender-smart” investing is an approach that takes gender-based issues into consideration in investment decisions. Being a gender-smart investor means investing in companies that are committed to:

  • Being owned and led by women
  • Creating and maintaining a gender-inclusive value chain
  • Ensuring their operations do no harm to women
  • Developing a gender-diverse and equitable workforce
  • Designing products or services that consider the distinct needs of women as a consumer segment

What You’ll Learn

This program is open to Canadian and Americans of any gender who are curious about gender lens investing. Here’s how the one week virtual course breaks down:

  1. Investment Strategies – Design a thesis, strategy and timeline for success that empowers women-owned and led businesses and promotes equity & diversity at all levels.
  2. The Investment Process – Explore the end-to-end process of an individual deal and define the path to your next investment with a gender lens and develop your own gender action plan.
  3. Venture Assessment – Use a gender investment lens to assess startup potential including the diversity of teams, DEI practices, the outcomes & benefits of the product or service and more.
  4. Deal Mechanics – Get a closer look at the technical side of deals in venture investing and how it can be revised to better suit the needs of women, including non-traditional funding terms.
  5. Decoding Investor Decks – Best practices for identifying & evaluating value propositions that are unique to women-led startups and underrepresented in VC.
  6. Deal Screening – Get an insider’s exclusive look at the pitch deck, exec summary of an established founder’s actual deal and use what you have learned in real life.
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The course empowered me to believe that I can become an angel investor and that this can be an impactful way to align my dollars and investments with my values.

Taheera Fidaali
Owner – Tula CPA

Program Schedule

We’re now taking a waitlist for future sessions, including one in May. Spaces are limited to nurture an intimate, interactive and engaging learning experience. We’re accepting applications on a rolling basis, so sign up asap to avoid disappointment (well, disappointment about missing out on this course at least.):

Cohort #3 – May 2024 TBA

Meet Your Instructors

Marlon Thompson, a bearded man wearing a white button-down shirt, sits with hand resting on one knee

“Venture capital is a historically difficult industry to break into. The lack of diversity that exists within the ecosystem creates an even higher barrier for minorities and individuals with non-traditional backgrounds. The most important thing we can do for our network is create the conditions for them to gain meaningful experiences, drive relevant opportunities and develop their own strategy for startup investing.”

Marlon Thompson (he/him), CXO of Spring & Your Instructor

“I’ve been entrepreneurial since I was 19, and have encountered my fair share of bias related to age, experience and capabilities. I also had no idea what I was getting myself into when I started to raise my first round of funding and I am thrilled to have built a program that makes learning about the world of venture capital simple and accessible..”

Allison Gibson (she/her), Chief Design Officer, Spring

“Having raised funds as part of a startup and then part of an early-stage VC firm, I have a deep understanding of what it means to invest at an early stage. I am looking forward to sharing some of this experience with a team of women. We need more women investors at the table so that more capital flows into women founders, but also because investment is an opportunity to build wealth and to be influential on the topics that matter to us. I look forward to demystifying some concepts and sharing what an investment process typically looks like.”

Davina MacPhail (she/her), Director of Partnerships, Spring

“I’m excited to share my personal experience raising capital as a woman founder, but also as an angel investor. In the 10 years since I made my first angel investment, capital going to women-led founders has only grown from about 1% to just over 2%. We need equal representation on the investor side to ensure women-led companies are funded, often providing innovations that solve real issues for women globally. Women hold increasingly more purchasing power, so let’s use that to make a difference.”

Mari Mathews (she/her), Director of Business Development, Spring

With support from

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Take a Stand for Women

Sign up for this free course now.

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