RALEIGH, North Carolina (WTVD) -- Women get fewer and smaller business loans than men. They pay higher interest rates than men. And when it comes to raising some venture capital to fund a new business or startup, women-led businesses are nearly overlooked.
"Women only get two to six percent of venture funding dollars, and women of color - get ready to be even more disgusted - get only 0.2 percent of venture dollars. It's egregious and it has to stop," Karen Cahn said.
That's why Cahn created IFundWomen.com, an online crowdfunding platform just for women-led startups and small businesses. And she just launched a new initiative focused on women-led ventures in the Triangle.
Ashlyn Sanders, a UNC and Duke grad battled through a rare brain condition that caused her to have seizures. That led her to create a mouth guard to protect a person's tongue and jaw during a seizure. Sanders has a patent pending for her NeuroVice.
"Having a couple of seizures a day for almost a year, I would say it's definitely more challenging academically and physically and emotionally in graduate school," Sanders said.
She's one of the first local startups to get accepted to IFundWomen's Raleigh initiative. She's asking for $50,000 to create a functional prototype.
IFundWomen is a rewards-based site. Companies offer prizes - such as T-shirts or products, for cash.
IFundWomen gets 5 percent of a company's funding as its fee. Cahn and her team offer business coaching and help to produce a professional 1-minute video.
Here's how to apply:
Link to iFund Women Raleigh-area business application
Link to projects page
Ashlyn Sanders' new iFundWomen page ad: https://ifundwomen.com/projects/neurovice
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IFundWomen helps Triangle women with great business ideas