Playfair Capital and Global Ventures Launch “Female Founder Office Hours” across MENA

Playfair Capital and Global Ventures Launch “Female Founder Office Hours” across MENA

Playfair Capital, a London-based early-stage fund, and Global Ventures, an international venture capital firm, have announced the launch of ‘Female Founder Office Hours’ across MENA, with 150 of the world’s leading venture capital funds, including Atomico, Balderton, Creandum, EQT Ventures, Firstminute, Localglobe, Northzone, Notion, and Seedcamp, hosting virtual mentoring sessions for over 400 female founders from across MENA, the UK, and Europe on 10th  November 2022.

Female Founder Office Hours, which launched in London in 2019, breaks down investment barriers for female entrepreneurs, who are infamously underserved by the global investment community. For one hour, each founder meets virtually with four investors to discuss their technology and business model, seek advice, pitch for investment, or find a mentor. The founders meet with a mix of local and international investors to gain a diverse perspective on the company they are establishing and to broaden their network.

Playfair Capital is hosting the event, which is supported by Dubai-based Global Ventures, Tech Nation, Google for Startups, and Words + Pixels. Also, during the previous seven editions, a total of 5,230 individual mentoring sessions were held, with 1,307 founders and 200 investors participating. To date, 32% of event attendees have gone on to raise £280 million in funding, with success stories including Apryl, Freyda, HIVED, Vira Health, Opply, Sixfold Bioscience, and SymTerra.

Furthermore, this eighth event is part of a long-term commitment to redressing the gender imbalance in fundraising, which includes expanding to MENA to engage and support the next generation of female founders worldwide.

What the Stakeholders are saying

.Chris Smith, Playfair Capital’s Managing Partner said “The underrepresentation of female founders in venture capital funding is a worldwide issue. As a result, we are thrilled to be expanding the initiative we launched in the UK in 2019 to MENA. This is a region brimming with talent and promise. However, aside from a small number of pioneers, it is a region that lacks the widespread support needed for women who want to build globally significant businesses. This event enables us to connect these women founders, wherever they may be in the region, to local and international investors to build new relationships, find new mentors, and, ultimately, secure funding.”

Sacha Haider, Partner at Global Ventures, on his part said “Increasing the pipeline of female founders has been a top priority for regional capital allocators for several years, so it is very exciting to see top VCs from the ecosystem collaborate for the first edition of Female Founders Office Hours in MENA. While the ecosystem has made significant strides in recent years, with 35% of tech entrepreneurs in MENA being female, much more work remains to be done. Female Founders Office Hours aims to provide regional female founders with access to capital and to build a community of investors. Diversity of leadership and thought is an important factor shaping the future of the MENA entrepreneurial landscape, and female founders play an important role in this.”