ALIAVIA Ventures is actively combatting gender funding inequalities in both the US and Australia. Two tech veterans founded ALIAVIA with the goal of narrowing the funding gap for female founders. The venture firm invests in startups led by women, particularly those aiming to connect the Australian and American markets. Today, the firm announced the successful closure of its inaugural fund, amounting to $13.5 million AUD ($8.7 million USD).
ALIAVIA Ventures is Actively Combatting Gender Funding Inequalities
Notable investors in this fund include Carol Schwartz, the founder of Trawalla Group, Tattarang (the Forrest Family Office), Robyn and Victoria Denholm of the Wollemi Capital Group, Dom Pym, the founder of Euphemia and Up Bank, and Cynthia Scott, the managing director and group CEO of Zip Co.
Since its launch in 2021, ALIAVIA has invested approximately AUD $8.4 million in nine startups founded by women. These startups include Eugene, an at-home genetic testing company, HowToo, an online training platform, Othelia, a culture AI startup, and Loupe, an art-streaming startup.
Anchor investor Schwartz expressed her interest in ALIAVIA, stating, “Marisa and Kate are pioneers. They are the first and only pre-Series A VC in Australia founded by and exclusively investing in women. They continue to take the lead in promoting gender equality in VC funding.
Out of the $238.3 billion in venture capital distributed in the U.S. last year, only 1.9% was directed towards startups comprising entirely of women teams. This is despite the fact that private tech companies led by women deliver a 35% higher return on investment, as reported by the Kauffman foundation.
Marisa Warren and Kate Vale, the founders of ALIAVIA, aim to make a difference in this regard. The venture firm has specific criteria for its portfolio, targeting pre-seed and seed-stage startups in Australia and the United States. These startups must have at least one female founder and be involved in building either B2B or B2C tech companies. ALIAVIA is interested in various sectors, including health tech, fintech, edtech, HR tech, media, and entertainment.
Typically, its first fund offers funding ranging from US$250,000 to $750,000, with the possibility of follow-on funding. Warren emphasized that ALIAVIA prefers to lead deals, which female founders find valuable because securing lead investors can be one of the more challenging aspects of fundraising. Lead investors can help attract other investors to participate.
ALIAVIA’s first fund supports approximately five startups founded in Australia. These startups receive guidance on the timing and strategies for expanding into the U.S. market. This includes assistance in handling distinctions between the two markets and connecting with potential customers, investors, and talent through introductions.
As an illustration, the Sydney-based online training platform, HowToo, began operating at the onset of the pandemic and witnessed significant demand both in Australia and the U.S. Currently, the team has expanded its presence in the U.S. and has acquired over 20 U.S.-based customers, including HubSpot. Warren, referring to the U.S. market as “complex,” mentioned that ALIAVIA collaborated closely with HowToo to develop their go-to-market strategy, focusing on target marketing in particular geographical areas and industries.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is Addressing Gender Funding Inequalities Important?
Gender funding inequalities persist in the startup and venture capital world. ALIAVIA Ventures recognizes the need for greater equity and opportunities for female founders.
What Types of Startups Does ALIAVIA Ventures Invest in?
ALIAVIA Ventures focuses on pre-seed and seed-stage startups in various sectors, including health tech, fintech, edtech, HR tech, media, and entertainment.
What is ALIAVIA Ventures?
ALIAVIA Ventures is a venture firm that is actively working to combat gender funding inequalities in both the United States and Australia.
What sets ALIAVIA Ventures Apart in the Venture Capital Landscape?
ALIAVIA Ventures stands out by focusing exclusively on startups with at least one female founder, aiming to be a catalyst for greater gender equality in the venture capital world.
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