43 Exceptional Women-led Start-ups to Participate in Astia’s Venture Accelerator Silicon Valley Program


Exclusive program offers unparalleled resource for success

SAN FRANCISCO, November 2, 2010 – Astia, the premier Silicon Valley venture accelerator for women-led high growth companies, today announced that 43 exceptional startups founded or led by women will participate in the Astia “Doing it Right” Silicon Valley 2010 Program, held at Microsoft in San Francisco from November 1-6. In addition to the North American companies, two companies come from Europe, one from India and one from New Zealand.

The female founders of these high-growth start-ups in the sectors of Enterprise Technology, Life Sciences, Clean Tech and Consumer Products/Services are all seeking to accelerate their company’s success. Through Astia and its Doing it Right Program they get an unprecedented access to VC and angel funding, as well as expertise in a multitude of fields necessary to build successful businesses.

The program starts today with a comprehensive six-day workshop (48 sessions with over 125 speakers) followed by a two-month program of personalized advice from experts, and a presentation in January 2011 at the prestigious Astia Silicon Valley Investor forum. And after that Astia companies keep tapping into the Astia eco-system, some even through their exit.

“The tremendous response to our program speaks to the innovation and growth potential coming from today’s women-led businesses, which hold the promise to positively impact our economy,” said Sharon Vosmek, CEO of Astia.  “We are thrilled to welcome these impressive entrepreneurs and provide them with this unique opportunity to access a global ecosystem of resources that can help accelerate their success.” 

The entrepreneurs were chosen to participate in the Doing it Right program based on their ability to demonstrate an innovative idea in a high-growth sector, a potential high-growth investment opportunity, an exceptional team and business strategy, a significant market opportunity, and a defendable competitive advantage.

Some of the companies have already raised initial funding and are now seeking their first institutional funding, others are startups who are seeking seed funding. But they all have in common that they intend to be leaders in their sectors and have viable plans to execute on this vision.

“Astia is like a ‘Y-combinator’ for women-founders and their teams. We support Astia in focusing on women-led start-ups and believe from past experience that female entrepreneurs who participate in the program will be better prepared to take their organizations to the next level – whether it’s to secure funding, a major customer, or a potential exit,” said Mitchell Kertzman, Partner, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners. “Astia puts in practice the public call to women-entrepreneurs to build high growth businesses”.

Astia has delivered exceptional results to the start-ups it serves. To date, more than 60 percent of the companies showcased at Astia Investor Forums have secured funding or an exit within one year, totaling more than $750 million raised and 20 exits including two IPOs.

Laura Feng, Astia US Media, 978-975-1414, lfeng@tieronepr.com

Andrea Roesch, Astia US Media, 650-644-1700, aroesch@tieronepr.com

Cordelia Meacher, Astia UK Media, +44 (0) 7961 311080, cordelia@if-communications.com

About Doing it Right

Now held in Silicon Valley, New York, London and India, Astia’s Doing it Right is a transformative program that provides entrepreneurs with access to a broad range of resources and experts to raise capital and maximize the success of their businesses.  Participants in this program can seize opportunities to engage with angel investors and VCs, craft high impact investor pitches, build financial plans for maximum growth, and participate in many other workshops that provide the blueprint for successful growth strategies. To date, over 250 companies have participated in the Doing it Right programs around the globe.

About Astia

Astia is a global not-for-profit organization with a distinct focus and mission – to uniquely source innovation by propelling women’s full participation as entrepreneurs and leaders in high-growth businesses, fuelling innovation and driving economic growth. Guided by a proven philosophy that gender diversity is an essential element of innovation, Astia works with start-ups around the world as they access capital, grow their businesses, and hone the leadership skills of their founding teams.

The Astia model of engaging a community of experts to the benefit of the select start-ups it serves has resulted in an exceptional success rate: since 2003, over 60 percent of companies that have participated in the Astia Investor Forums have secured funding or achieved an exit within one year of presenting, totalling more than $750 million dollars raised and 20 exits, including two IPOs. Headquartered in San Francisco, Astia delivers programs for entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, New York, London and India. Astia has also had significant press coverage in major media channels including The New York Times, Businessweek, Forbes and The Financial Times. For more information, visit www.astia.org.

Astia Sponsors

Astia is generously supported by The Three Guineas Fund, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Microsoft, Fenwick & West, AOL, Lowenstein Sandler, Moss Adams, Morrison & Foerster, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, SNR Denton, SVB Financial Group, Osborne Clarke, US Trust – Bank of America, Wells Fargo, AngelSoft, Cisco, Iron Creative, IF Communications, Tier One Partners, J. Sagar Associates, Alloy Ventures, AOL Ventures, Asset Management, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, Illuminate Ventures, Levensohn Venture Partners, Golden Seeds, Prolog Ventures, StarVest Partners, and Rose Tech Ventures.