Lydia, we salute you.
Giving a voice to the voiceless, promoting the achievements of the historically disadvantaged, or any other kind of ‘day’ like International Women’s Day (IWD) often misses the point. Days are for the commemoration of events and no day, month or limited celebration is sufficient to drive real and much-needed progress for equality.
Perhaps an awareness day around the importance of recycling advances the cause but the spectacle of IWD can be a bit cynical, to say the least. We’re not here to take sides except to agree that Lydia’s sentiment is the right one.
Conviction News will not focus on IWD for the sake of IWD but for the fact diversity, equity and inclusion are at the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals.
In the next few weeks expect Conviction to emphasise women across coverage, newsletters and social media. But in the near and long term, not just for IWD.
In fact, Conviction News is already in high gear ahead of IWD. Here’s a recap:
- Fairview Capital’s annual Market Review of Woman and Minority-Owned Private Equity and Venture Capital Firms sent signals of progress. More at Conviction News
- This week the early-stage firm co-founded by Serena Williams, Serena Ventures (SV) revealed an inaugural $111 million fund to invest in diverse founders and startups for a more inclusive economy. More to follow
- Canada’s woman-founded and -led Summit Nanotech announced a $14 million Series A to commercialise its process for lithium extraction. More at Conviction News
- Woman-founded Hydro Wind Energy is set to launch a crowdfunding campaign after securing a €50 million capital commitment from the Paris-based alternative investor GEM Group in December. More to follow
Elsewhere, Sifted’s Newsletter today highlighted Sifted HQ's International Women's Week alongside a roundup of its recent reports on women in venture and startups. In particular, watch for an update to Sifted’s 100+ Female angel investors in Europe.
In the last few weeks, episodes of Citywire’s The Selection Show podcast have focused on women and diversity. While not venture capital or tech startups, the issues are a bellwether and we found the conversations very insightful.
In particular, we’d recommend Citywire’s interview with Deborah Gilshan, Founder of The 100% Club titled Why asset managers are slow at initiating diversity resolutions. On the podcast, Deborah provides an overview of the annual FTSE Women Leaders report.
Launched in February, FTSE Women Leaders research revealed 40 per cent of board positions on the FTSE 100 are now held by women. According to the 100% Club, the UK now ranks second internationally for board representation.
FYI/In case you missed it, Conviction News has already covered the crisis in Ukraine. Since we’re here on the subject of IWD, it’s important to reiterate that position set out in the Newsletter 5th March:
“While the world watches on in horror at events in Ukraine, industry commentary has focused on everything from the impact on startups to venture capital flight from Russia. After this note of solidarity, unless circumstances change or some good might come of it Conviction will focus solely on our beat. But please do get in touch with any ideas and ways to support the people of Ukraine - we’d love to hear from you.”