Mint Ventures secures funding from Scottish Enterprise to expand membership

Mint Ventures, a women-led angel group that is democratising angel investment, has received funding from Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government’s Scottish Technology Ecosystem Fund for a series of regional roadshows to encourage more women to become angel investors, as well as helping women-led companies to access investment.

Mint Ventures secures funding from Scottish Enterprise to expand membership

Mint Ventures co-founder and CEO Gillian Fleming, co-founder and chair Lynne Cadenhead and co-founder and director Carolyn Currie.

Just ahead of International Women’s Day yesterday, the recently updated Rose Review 2022 of Female Entrepreneurship confirmed that access to finance remains the number one barrier for women starting and growing their businesses. In response to this, the UK Business Angels Association (UKBAA) has established a UK-wide Women Business Angel Taskforce, of which Mint Ventures is a founding member.

Mint Ventures’ regional roadshows are part of a new programme of events across the UK to spread awareness of business angel investing for women. This programme – ‘Women Backing Women’ – is a transformational initiative to tap into the collective power, expertise and financial capital of women to help other women start and grow their businesses.

Taking place throughout March and April in Aberdeen, Dundee, Glasgow, St Andrews, Edinburgh and the Borders, and collaborating with a number of Scottish business angel groups, the events will offer potential women investors and entrepreneurs alike an opportunity to learn, ask questions and be inspired in a safe-space environment.

Participants will get an overview of angel investment and how it can support more women-led companies and those with diverse leadership teams to grow and scale.

Gillian Fleming, CEO of Mint Ventures said: “This funding will help us reach even more women who are either looking to become investors or seeking investment for their companies. The barriers to women becoming angel investors are cultural, not financial. Women clearly have the wealth and business skills, but they often don’t have access to the same networks as men.”

Victoria Carmichael, director of strategic investment at Scottish Enterprise, said: “Mint Ventures is challenging perceptions of who can be an investor and democratising access to these opportunities. With International Women’s Day having just taken place, there’s never been a better time to highlight this. Mint Ventures’ focus on investing in women-led companies or those with diverse leadership teams is not only a values-led approach, it also makes great business sense. We know that diversity of thought is key to business innovation and success, making such companies much more likely to thrive and grow.”

Kate Forbes, cabinet secretary for finance and the economy, added: “Encouraging more women to become angel investors and, in turn, helping women-led businesses access vital investment, will give more women the resources they need to grow their businesses. I am pleased that the Scottish Government’s Ecosystem Fund, in connection with the Scottish Technology Ecosystem Review, is able to support an expansion of Mint Ventures’ activity in this important area.

“It is clear that, collectively, we must do more to address the gender gap in business participation in Scotland. That is why organisations such as Mint Ventures are critical to our tech and wider entrepreneurial ecosystems. It is also why I have committed funding of £50 million over the course of this parliament to support more women in enterprise, and I have commissioned experienced entrepreneur and investor, Ana Stewart to lead a short-term review of how best to target that support and help more women realise their business ambitions.”

Jenny Tooth, executive chair of UKBAA, said: “Currently less than 20% of the angel investment community are women, whilst we know that women make between 30-50% of their investments in female founders. The new ‘Women Backing Women’ campaign established under the Rose Review is seeking to encourage many more women across the UK to recognise the opportunity to become active angel investors.

“We are delighted to be working with Mint Ventures who are taking leadership across Scotland to drive out the message to women with the potential to invest and ensure this important source of finance enables more Scottish female founders to achieve their growth ambitions.”

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