2019 Women Startup Challenge Cohosted by Google
Submission Deadline03/28/2019

Women Who Tech’s 8th Women Startup Challenge is showcasing and funding the best early stage women-led startups in North America who are building products to solve big problems. Applications close on March 28, 2019 at 11:59 PST.

Launched in partnership with Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist and Craig Newmark Philanthropies, the Women Startup Challenge will showcase 10 of the best early stage, women-led tech startups who will pitch their companies at Google in NYC on May 29th, 2019 for $50,000 to some of the biggest investors, including:

  • Ellie Wheeler, Partner at Greycroft
  • Esther Dyson, Investor
  • Jen Wolf, Partner and COO of Initialized Capital
  • Jennifer Fielding, Managing Director of Techstars and Cofounder of The Fund
  • Nashilu Mouen-Makoua, Investor at First Round Capital
  • Nisha Dua, General Partner at BBG Ventures

In addition to the $50,000 cash grant (equity-free), all 10 finalists will receive fundraising pitch coaching leading up to the Women Startup Challenge and attend a half day mentoring event at Techstars in NYC where they will meet meet one-on-one with investors.



  • Your startup product and mission must be focused on solving big problems via technology.
  • Your venture can be at the prototype stage, or have already launched. You may not apply if you are only in the concept stage.
  • Your startup must incorporate technology into the approach of your product, which allows the company to rapidly and massively scale in a manner that traditional, independent small businesses cannot. Please note that using tech (i.e. hosting a blog, selling products on your website, or using social media in your marketing) does not qualify as using tech to scale on a mass level nationally and globally.
  • Fast growing with degrees of innovation.
  • You’ve raised no more than $2.2M USD from combined sources.
  • You are a technical Founder or you have a technical Cofounder. Note: If you don’t have a technical Cofounder, please email us and tell us more about your setup.
  • You must be a woman-led startup, defined as having at least one woman Cofounder on the team.
  • All ideas must be original work or an improvement upon an existing idea without infringements.


  • Your startup must be located within North America.
  • Note: Agencies or consulting businesses are not eligible unless you have created a product that fits the above criteria.
  • The (co)founder pitching at the Women Startup Challenge must be a woman. Women Who Tech uses an inclusive definition of “woman” and “female”, and we welcome all women, including ciswomen, transwomen, genderqueer women, and non-binary people who identify, have identified, or have been identified as female or woman.
  • All applications must be submitted in English, and all pitches must be given in English.
  • Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis from February 20, 2019 at 7:00am PST until March 28, 2019 at 11:59pm PST.
  • Applications will only be accepted online through the reviewr.com site.
  • No applicant may reach out to judges, sponsors, and/or partners in advance of the Women Startup Challenge advocating for their startup. Anyone who does will be disqualified. If you have any conflicts of interest, please reach out to the Women Who Tech team prior to submitting your application.
  • Prior Women Startup Challenge finalists are not eligible to apply unless they have a new startup and new product. Finalists from the Women Startup Challenge Podcast are, however, eligible to apply for the in-person pitch competition.
  • Women Who Tech reserves the right to select and reject winners at any time, and may add finalists to any round of the competition to give more entrepreneurs access to the Women Startup Challenge.
  • All finalists must pay their own travel and accommodations to the Women Startup Challenge in New York City.
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