Here's how Vinetta Project DC is supporting women founders in 2019 - Technical.ly DC

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Jul. 30, 2019 12:55 pm

Here’s how Vinetta Project DC is supporting women founders in 2019

In an impact report for the first half of the year, the local chapter of Vinetta shared successes and numbers in four key areas of capital.

Aperiomics takes home the grand prize at the Vinetta Project's final 2018 pitch competition.

(Photo by Michelai Graham)

We’re a little over half way through the year, so The Vinetta Project DC measured its success in four key areas and shared it in an impact report.

Originally launched in New York, The Vinetta Project is an organization connecting women founders to capital and resources to scale their businesses. Prominent #dctech leader Amelia Friedman spearheaded Vinetta’s expansion in D.C. with the launch of a chapter in April 2015.

In this latest report, the organization measured its success in financial capital, intellectual capital, social capital and personal capital.

In the financial capital category, which focuses on increasing women’s reach to capital, Vinetta received 129 applicants for its annual venture challenge, which was a 23% increase compared to last year. Nearly half, 49%, of companies in Vinetta’s network produce revenue with 66 D.C.-based companies having previously raised capital at an average of $180,000. More recently, an upcoming Vinetta Project Venture Challenge finalist, Charlottesville, Va.-based Pearl Certification, completed a $4 million Series A financing round ahead of the premiere event slated for September.

For social capital, which is categorized as impacting founders access to networks, visibility and community growth, Vinetta helped create 610 new connections between community members from community events and personal relationship development, the report states. So far, the local organization has hosted 10 events this year, including pitch showcases and exclusive founders & funders dinners. One of Vinetta’s recent events was the last semifinalist showcase, which took place on June 19 where the final two women founders were selected to pitch at the final competition in September, along with two others who competed in a semifinalist round in March.

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Vinetta set a goal to engage its network of founders in 20% of its new programing leg, personal capital, which will be focused on events surrounding leadership skills, resilience and purpose. This new initiative will include its already established founder happy hour series, with new additions of events to support the mind, body and soul. Under this umbrella, Vinetta announced a partnership earlier this month with local fitness studio Pulse House of Fitness, which offers its members a total mind and body workout experience.

“Some of my specific goals are related to the qualitative outcomes from the Personal Capital programming mentioned above,” Kelly O’Malley, Vinetta’s Mid-Atlantic regional director, told Technical.ly. “Outside of that, I remain committed to facilitating strategic connections for the founders in our community (aiming to hit more than 1,000 for the year) and helping to increase the amount of Financial Capital our founders access, currently at $35.7 million.”

Lastly, under the intellectual capital category, where Vinetta is impacting its network with educational resources, the local organization is curating a problem hacking program for founders. With this program, founders are paired with experts to solve business challenges over a three-month period. There are currently 11 ventures in the program who are paired with 11 experts for one-on-one mentoring and coaching.

“I participated in the Vinetta Project Problem Hacking last summer and found it very helpful,” Sarah Hostyk, founder of Place Tempo said in the report. “The Booz Allen Hamilton consultants helped me with brainstorming and analyzing my market and product in the most effective ways as I launched the 2.0 version of my app. Their insight and support was very helpful.”

Amid all of its success, Vinetta is preparing for its Final Venture Challenge Showcase on September 12 at the Booz Allen Hamilton Innovation Center.

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