Highline BETA of Toronto has announced the relaunch of Female Funders Angel Academy, a national program that will help women become angel investors.
Highline, which supports and invests in new ventures, last year bought Female Funders and is now working with the National Angel Capital Organization to roll the program out across the country.
"There are a handful of incredibly talented women investors today—but we need more," Lauren Robinson, Executive Director of Female Funders and COO of Highline BETA, said in a release. "We talk a lot about the growth of female entrepreneurship, and we see the tides starting to shift. But without representation on both sides of the table — among both entrepreneurs and investors — we won't see real change.”
Only 6 percent of deal-making venture capitalists and 20 percent of angel investors are women, Highline said in the statement. The revamped Female Funders program will focus on three key areas to help women make their first investments: blended education; investment opportunities, supported by expert and peer guidance; and a curated network of women executives, investors and innovators.
Members of Angel Academy's first cohort will undertake an eight-week self-paced training program that covers the fundamentals of angel investing. These include the mechanics of a successful deal; sourcing high-potential startups; and creating an investment thesis and portfolio strategy.
In the year following the training program, Angel Academy members will have the opportunity to initiate their own deals or join deals through the Female Funders syndicate, and to co-invest alongside Highline BETA. The Highline BETA executive team (which has made 42 pre-seed investments) and Female Funders advisors will provide cohort members with guidance and support throughout the investment process.
"Women executives have the networks and industry expertise to become exceptional angel investors and to help entrepreneurs at the most critical stages of a company's development," said NACO Executive Director Yuri Navarro NACO.
Angel Academy members will also have access to a curated deal flow of early-stage, high-growth startups through Highline BETA accelerator programs, said the statement.
“Women corporate and technology executives have the networks and expertise to impact startups and to source great investment opportunities that others may overlook,” said Robinson. “We're relaunching Angel Academy to give women the edge they need to become standout angel investors."