#FemaleTechFounder Night – March event round up

Remember this? It’s incredible to think that the photo above was taken just last month, a couple of days after International Women’s Day.

Much more innocent times.

March’s #FemaleTechFounder Night took place two weeks before stay at home restrictions to combat the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) came to effect in the UK.

At the time we were still reeling from news that the global financial markets had faced their biggest fall since 2008 due to the pandemic; indeed this had a direct impact on the event as one of our speakers had to pull out as a result.

We were at the start of the highly anticipated week-long flagship Digital City Festival, and, as part of the festival’s official Fringe, we welcomed visitors to the city of Manchester who had travelled hundreds of miles to attend. It was actually an incredible evening of networking and making new connections. 

We had no idea of what was to come.

Looking back at the tweets from the event (more on this below), it’s heartening to be reminded of how much valuable advice and support was given by the founders and speakers present on the night.

The event in March was a follow up to February’s event on engaging with investors.  There was more than a passing reference to the suffragettes with all the speakers sporting a sash and rosette sourced by our inimitable host Claire-Marie Boggiano (@CMBoggiano), director, Lurig Ltd.

Thank you to sponsors ThoughtWorks for the gorgeous event space and the fantastic food and refreshments. Thanks also to our amazing speakers!

Ably compered by Claire-Marie, the evening opened with a Q&A on how to wow investors with Catherine Thomas (@cthomas0710), Account Manager, Business Growth Hub, who shared some fantastic tips.

A key takeaway from her opener was that, having gotten to the pitching stage, founders often felt they had to do everything. In the discussions that followed, it was important to remember the investor(s) also had a part to play in “making the relationship work”.

After Catherine was the first of our lightning speakers, Dijonn Taylor (@DijonnTaylor), founder and CEO, Savvy Guest (@SavvyGuest)

Dijonn inspired us with tales of resilience and focus as she brought her idea Savvy Guest to life; it was amazing to hear how she coped with financial difficulty after pouring hard earned funds into the first web developer she hired who went on to disappoint.  

Savvy Guest’s online platform connects young people in education with leaders in business who can inspire and mentor their journey, and this following a brief conversation about what they do and how they got there. The success it is now experiencing is a reflection of its founder’s determination, and resolve.

Amy Whitell (@AmyWhitell), CEO and co-founder of Collctiv (@collctiv) was up next to give a lightning talk.  Hers was another fascinating insight to the mind and motivations of a serial entrepreneur.

Her passion for the platform she co-founded after successfully selling another online business really shone through and her wit and excellent slides made for a very engaging presentation.

Collctiv solves a problem that anyone who organises things for friends and family knows only too well.  You go to the effort of making sure the party, outing or holiday is booked, everyone eventually turns up but at the end of it you’re out of pocket having forked out to pay for much of it in the first place.

Collctiv makes it easy to manage group collections for one-off or recurring payments and is gaining a growing reputation for its simplicity and ease of use.

We ended the evening as we always do with a Q&A with all the night’s speakers, and, as always, Twitter tells the story a lot better…

But, before I share those tweets, I’d like to invite you to join us at the virtual Leeds Digital Festival on Monday 27 April, 6pm-8pm for this month’s #FemaleTechFounder night.

Using the wonders of Zoom webinar technology, we are linking arms with our friends across the Pennines for a celebration of some of the region’s incredible founders and a much needed discussion on how to win with your startup in spite of the global lockdown.

Sign up to attend, it’s free!

And, if you haven’t already, please take a minute to support the UK’s startup community at this difficult time by taking part in our quick polls. No registration required.

Former speakers, we need you!

Have you ever spoken at #FemaleTechFounder night? We want to hear from you!  Please get involved!

We are using Assenty’s social-first question board platform to the max to make this an event you can take part in, wherever you are.

Look out for tweets and mentions on social media and join us! We have a dedicated FemaleTechFounder Slack group (do join!) and we will also be running interactive polls on social media before, during and after the event. Learn more about the event.

Any questions or queries, please reach out, via email (femaletechfounder@assenty <dot> com) or on Twitter (@TechFemale).

Join us on Monday 27th April and hear from Lauren Riley (@MissLaurenRiley), founder and CEO, The Link App (@TheLinkAppHQ), Emma Hopkinson-Spark (@bluebell_emma), Chief of Staff at 101 Ways (@101wayshq), Georgia Halston (@georgiahalston), founder, Halston Marketing (@HalstonMarketin), co-founder at @RegTechTalks_UKGeseth Garcia (@GesethGarcia), co-founder and Director of projects & learning, Near-Life (@NearLifeTech) and Rachel Morgan-Trimmer (@sparkleclass), Consultant, Sparkle Class. Host: Claire-Marie Boggiano (@CMBoggiano), director, Lurig Ltd

Here come those tweets, complete with pictures and video!