Women angel syndicate raises over £2.4m for female founders in year one

24 June 2022

The first of its kind in the region, Women Angels of the North was launched by Fund Her North in response to startling figures announced in The Rose Review of 2019, which identified that only 1% of VC funding went to female founders.

In the latest report, published in 2021, these figures had risen to 6%. The syndicate ensures that more investment goes directly into female-founded businesses and women entrepreneurs.

Since it was established in 2021, Women Angels of the North has closed seven deals amounting to £2,406,000 for six businesses, including: Safer Date, Aterlerix, Rarecan, Chu Lo and Dear Bump.

Safer Date was the recipient of the group’s first funding round and has recently closed on its second round of funding with the help of Women Angels of the North.

Safer Date was founded by Elaine Parker following a harrowing online dating experience that spiralled out of control with a man that had a long history of domestic abuse. It is a dating app which fully identifies every member to eliminate fake profiles, catfish and scam accounts, and which offers the most comprehensive global criminal background checks possible.

Safer Date initially raised a £225,000 funding round in October 2021, and is currently in the process of raising a second round, with Women Angels of the North supporting the overall raise.

Elaine accessed support from the Innovation SuperNetwork and NorthInvest to navigate her first fundraise, benefitting from advice on creating a pitch deck and readiness training. The funding round enabled Elaine to develop, test and subsequently launch the app to market.

Commenting on the impact on the support she received from Women Angels of the North, Elaine said: “The funding landscape can be a tricky one to navigate, not least as a woman, and it was important to me that I was able to work with people who understood my story. The fact that there is an organisation out there like Women Angels of the North, who are there to support female founders, is incredibly valuable, and I’m grateful for their support.”

Jordan Dargue, co-founder of the Women Angels of the North syndicate and investor in Safer Date, said: “I’m so excited to be celebrating the first birthday of Women Angels of the North. It’s rewarding to look back on the businesses that we’ve been able to support, including Safer Date, and see tangible evidence that our work is having an impact. As the North’s only female angel syndicate, the need for more women backing women is glaringly obvious, and I’m really proud of the work we are doing to drive this agenda forward and create better conditions for female entrepreneurs.

“We’re also looking forward to celebrating our achievements at our Women Angels of the North Conference on 30 June, where we’ll continue to drive the conversation forward around investing in female-founded businesses. We’re expecting to draw over 120 from across the region, discussing the most pressing issues when it comes to growing a business, as launching our Women Backing Women campaign – more details to come!”

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