Securing investment can be challenging for women in STEM. Watch an online panel debate with women investors (webinar) and read our discussion paper aimed at highlighting innovative approaches to help women founders of spinouts and start-ups to grow their companies.
Meet the WEgate community: an online platform to connect women entrepreneurs across Europe and help them grow their businesses. The panel discussion and the Q&A session were chaired by Professor Simonetta Manfredi, Associate Dean Research and Knowledge Exchange in the Business School, also a member of the WEgate Council.
The panel members:
- Patricia Zeegers, Board Member of Global VP Entrepreneurship
- Gabriela K. Bogoeska, Executive Director of the Foundation for Management and Industrial Research and WEgate Community Coordinator
- Lynne Cadenhead, Entrepreneur, Investor, Chair of Women's Enterprise Scotland and member of T20 think tank of G20 Europe
- Anne Ravanona, Founder and CEO of Global Invest Her, Women's Advocate, EU delegation member to w20
- Brigitte Sardo, President of Association of SME in Turin
Watch the panel discussion and Q&A
Panelists shared their experiences and vision beyond their transformational products and technologies. The discussion focused on the role of universities to support more women in innovation and entrepreneurship and funding strategies to develop their ventures. Panelists included: Dr Olivia Champion, Co-founder of BioSystems Technology (BST) Ltd; Dr. Chiraz Ennaceur, CEO and Co-Founder of CORROSION RADAR LIMITED; Dr Ola Hekselman, Research Fellow at Imperial College London, CEO and Co-Founder of Solveteq; Dr Fanya Ismail, founder and CEO of SGMA (Sol-Gel Materials & Applications); Professor Linda King, Pro Vice-Chancellor Research and Global Partnerships at Oxford Brookes University, and Co-Founder of Oxford Expression Technologies Ltd; Maria Lundqvist of the European Investment Bank; and Simonetta Manfredi, Professor of Equality and Diversity Management at Oxford Brookes University.
This video provides the key highlights from a session ran by the project connecting successful spinout founders and women in business as mentors and women Early Career Researchers as mentees.
- Kate Barnard- Founder & Director, Enjoy The Air Limited and Director of WhatBox Consulting Limited.
- Catherine Bottrill- Co-Founder and CEO of Pilio
- Professor Joan Condell- CEO of ActionSense Ltd and former CEO of HidInImage Ltd
- Dr Felicity de Cogan- Founder of NitroPep Ltd
- Hsin (Sheana) Yu- CEO and Founder of Aergo Ltd
- Agne Mulkiate- Founder of Cycle.land
- Dr Liz Rowsell- Corporate R&D Director at Johnson Matthey
- Dr Antonia Sagona- Associate Professor in the School of Life Sciences, at the University of Warwick and Founder of Rapiphage Ltd and Lucidix Biolabs Ltd
Investing in Women-Led Start-Ups and Spinouts
This webinar is a recording of our event on 'Investing in Women-Led Start-Ups and Spinouts' with Advanced Oxford that explored how we can increase the number of investment opportunities which women of founding university spinout companies receive. We were joined by an esteemed panel of experts from the investment and business community:
- Chair: Sarah Haywood- Managing Director for Advanced Oxford
- Julie Silvester- FSE Group
- Rebecca Todd- Longwall Ventures
- Claudio D'Angelo- Founder and Managing Director of Spex Capital
- Claire Brown- Oxford Science Enterprises
- What can investors do to address the diversity challenge?
- Good practice for diversity in investment
- What can be done to encourage more women to work in investment?
This webinar is a recording of our research report launch The Spinout Journey. It presents the key findings from the research and provides an insight into the diverse experiences of women and men researchers who have successfully founded a university spinout. Access the summary and full report here.
Hear from some of the panel at our launch of ‘The Spinout Journey’ report on their key insights on the journey of spinout founders. Dr Olivia Champion, Founder and CEO of BioSystems Technology and Tamsin Mann, Director of Policy & Communications at PraxisAuril share their insights on how to support women spinout founders, the challenges encountered and how to further raise awareness on the key issues affecting academic entrepreneurs.
- Supporting Women to Become Spinout Founders: What actions can we take?
- Olivia Champion- Motivation for Founding a Spinout Company
- Olivia Champion- Experience of Gender Stereotyping
- Tamsin Mann- Raising Awareness of Different Spinout Journeys
- Tamsin Mann- Time as the Biggest Barrier to Commercialisation
Spinout profile: Catherine Bottrill
Watch our interview with Dr Catherine Bottrill, Co- Founder and CEO of Pilio, an environmental technology company working to help other companies be more sustainable. Learn about her company, her motivations to spinout and her thoughts on how institutions can further support women spinout founders in the future.
Pilio was spun out of the University of Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute by Catherine Bottrill and Russell Layberry, who have developed innovative carbon footprint and energy management software.
- Interview with Catherine Bottrill
- What does your spinout company do?
- How did you become an academic entrepreneur?
- What motivates you?
- How can institutions increase the number of women spinout founders?
- What were some of the critical factors in your success?
In Conversation with Professor Susan Brooks
Professor Susan Brooks is a Professor of Cell Biology and Director of Researcher Development for Oxford Brookes University. Susan has also founded a spinout company and joined us to explain how her spinout company came about, her motivations, the development of the company team and her experience of securing investment.
- Interview with Professor Susan Brooks
- Susan Brooks- Starting a Spinout Company
- Susan Brooks- Teamwork
- Susan Brooks- Funding and Investment
- Susan Brooks- Support
- Susan Brooks- Motivation
- Susan Brooks- Next Steps
- Susan Brooks- Workload and Time
Spinout profile: Sheana Yu
Watch our interview with Hsin Hua (Sheana) Yu, the founder and CEO of Aergo Health. Aergo is a medical technology company that is developing inclusive solutions to empower disabled people to live to their fullest potential. They are building a digital platform that uses pressure sensors to create comfortable seating systems for young wheelchair users.
- Interview with Sheana Yu
- How the spinout was developed
- Developing the Company Team
- Diversity of the Innovation Landscape
- Diversity and Funding
Start Up Founder Q&A: Brittany Harris
In our Q&A with Brittany Harris, CEO and Co-Founder of start up Qualis Flow (QFlow) we discuss her motivations for starting the company, the risks and challenges and what she loves about what she does.
QFlow enables construction sites to track and manage their environmental impact and drive a more sustainable construction process.
Women in Innovation: Closing the Gender Gap, in Conversation with Dr Fanya Ismail, Founder and CEO of SGMA
Dr Fanya Ismail, Founder and CEO of SGMA and winner of the "Women in Innovation" award, shares her experience of founding a successful research-based business and reflects on what can be done to close the gender gap in the innovation ecosystem.
SGMA (Sol-Gel) is an award-winning paper-coating technology that aims to tackle the global challenge of plastic pollution by providing a complete solution to replacing single use plastics.
This video series tells you everything you need to know about the ICURe programme - UKRI’s nationwide initiative to develop the entrepreneurial potential of early career researchers and encourage researchers to get out of the lab and assess the market potential of their ideas.
Join Edward Cole, IP and Commercialisation Manager at Oxford Brookes University, and Emanuela Carollo, R&D Lead for MetaGuideXLtd and ICURe Entrepreneurial Lead, to discover what ICURe could offer your team and hear first-hand experience from a woman researcher who has completed the programme whilst completing her PhD.
Interview with Eileen Modral: The Relationship Between Universities and Business Angels
Watch our interview with Eileen Modral, Investment Manager at OION Ltd, Business Finance Specialist for Enterprise Europe Network and Business Angel. We discussed how her role supports university spinouts, how the relationship between universities and business angels can be improved and how academic entrepreneurs can access the angel investment community.
- Interview with Eileen Modral
- Eileen Modral- What makes a good investment pitch?
- Eileen Modral- What does it mean to be ‘investment ready’?
Q&A with Jaci Barnett, Head of Research Commercialisation and Investment at University of Bristol
Watch our Q&A with Jaci Barnett, Head of Research Commercialisation and Investment at University of Bristol and learn what makes a good spinout founder, the risks and challenges of starting a spinout company and how she believes we can encourage more women into academic entrepreneurship.
The Spinout Journey
Would you like to know more about the journey to developing a spinout and hear from people involved in the process? Check out our video exploring the steps involved in spinning out and the things that need to be considered when embarking on the journey.
Speakers featured in order of appearance:
- Nicola McConville - Partner in the Growth Team, Taylor Vinters
- Graham M Mobbs - UK Astropreneurs Programme Manager, Science and Technology Research Council
- Eileen Modral - Investment Manager, Oxford Investment Opportunity Network
- Brittany Harris - CEO and Co-Founder of Qflow
- Jaci Barnett - Head of Research Commercialisation and Investment at University of Bristol
Launching a Spinout
Do you need advice on how to market your spinout company? How about what things to consider when asking for investment? And how do you know if you’re good at pitching?
Check out our new videos from Su Copeland and Sarah McCloughry of STEMM Commercial Training on how to ensure success when starting your spinout.
Su Copeland, Founder of Priddey Marketing, STEMM Commercial and The STEM Advisors Hub.
Su has over 30 years' experience in strategic and tactical sales and marketing and has developed specialisms in the science, technology engineering and professional services sectors. From 2008 to 2014, she grew a successful, ethical B2B telemarketing company whose clients included Microsoft, Fujitsu, Reuters, Pearson Education, Novartis and Sanofi Pasteur. Well-respected, she sits on the Oxford Chamber of Commerce committee and continues to focus on supporting wider collaboration and increased diversity across the STEMM sectors.
Sarah McCloughry FRSA, Director of Anrah Development Ltd and Founder of STEMM Commercial Ltd
Sarah is a graduate of Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, and a trained psychotherapist in practice for 28 years and more recently, works with clients in leadership for the last 18 years. She predominantly trains and coaches leading scientists and engineers, particularly women leaders, university research scientists and teams to enhance their confidence and communication to pitch for investment, win influence and achieve buy-in with stakeholders. Her training courses have won approval from the Royal Society of Chemistry.