The Vinetta Project wants to help female founders in DC raise money - DC


Feb. 10, 2016 12:35 pm

The Vinetta Project wants to help female founders in DC raise money

The global network launched a chapter in D.C. in April 2015.

At a Vinetta Project event in D.C. in September 2015.

(Photo by Micah Gold/Vinetta via Facebook)

It’s comforting to believe that the world of venture funding is a meritocracy.

It’s comforting to believe that a founder has a good idea, pitches successfully and gets money from a VC to turn said idea into a business.

But of course, in reality, there are many more complicating factors. Some founders have strategic advantages — perhaps they already know funders, or they know how to appeal to funders by speaking the language of venture capital.

For the rest, raising money is more difficult. Female founders are one group who have continually struggled when it comes to raising money from VCs. Despite some improvement over the years, a key study from 2014 showed that only 3 percent of all venture capital funding goes to companies with a female CEO. It’s hard to believe that female-led companies merit that small a slice of the pie.

Enter the Vinetta Project, a NYC-born collective that aims to solve the gender-based VC funding gap by creating opportunities to connect female founders to investors. The Project is currently active in seven cities, and expanded to D.C. in April 2015.

Amelia Friedman, cofounder of Hatch and, you might remember, co-creator of the 2016 Election Game, led the charge to establish the Vinetta Project in D.C.

A busy female founder herself, Friedman has since been running Vinetta events (all volunteer work) with the help of co-director Anna Kohanski Mason. Kohanski Mason moved to D.C. via New York and Los Angeles — she’s the cofounder of BurnThis, a social fitness app acquired by Beachbody (think P90X) in December 2015.

“I was massively impressed with what Amelia had done with Vinetta in D.C.,” Kohanski Mason told So while she looks for her next project, she’s happy to help create a network like Vinetta in the District.

The duo also have the assistance of an all-star Advisory Council featuring MakeOffices CMO Shana Glenzer, LifeFuels founder Jonathon Perrelli, WDCEP Director of Tech and Entrepreneurship Tiffany Thacker and others.


In order to participate in the Vinetta Project companies must be a DMV-based, for-profit company, be seriously raising for a seed round or Series A but have not yet received any VC funding, have at least one female founder, be in the pilot or growth stage and be tech-focused or tech-enabled.

Companies that have pitched so far at Vinetta events include, and Riide.

But Vinetta events go beyond pitch competitions — the organization also holds founder-funder dinners, workshops and fireside chats on a variety of topics.

Ultimately, however, Vinetta is trying to be more than an events organization — it’s trying to be a solid resource for female founders trying to raise capital. “We look at all the work we do for Vinetta through the lens of being founders ourselves,” Kohanski Mason told “We’re trying to build something we would find valuable.”

You must appreciate accurate, relevant and productive community journalism.  Support this sort of work from professional reporters with seasoned editors.  Become a member for $12 per month -30-


Here are the winners of the 2018 DCFemTech Awards

Vinetta Project DC wants to help founders solve problems

After acquisition, Herndon-based Opaq Networks closes $22.5M funding round



VR is cool, but it isn’t mainstream. This local company has a fix for that

Washington DC


Product Manager (DC, NY)

Apply Now
Severna Park, MD


Software Engineer

Apply Now
Severna Park, MD


Customer Support Engineer

Apply Now

Silicon Valley VC leads $20M funding round for Expel

Funding news about Cortex Building Intelligence

Barkly Pets wins Purina innovation prize



These DC-based founders drop some serious knowledge in our Tomorrow Toolkit ebook

NY, PA, DC, Virtual


Senior Account Executive, SAP SuccessFactors

Apply Now
Towson, Maryland

Stanley Black and Decker (GTS)

Software Engineer – Breakthrough Innovation

Apply Now
Towson, Maryland or Atlanta, GA

Stanley Black and Decker (GTS)

IoT Digital Architect – Breakthrough Innovation

Apply Now

Sign-up for regular updates from

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!