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As part of the Founder Institute’s series of free online startup events for entrepreneurs practicing social distancing, we were pleased to host a female founder Q&A panel event on Tuesday, March 9th featuring some of the fast-growing portfolio Alumni of the FI pre-seed startup accelerator.

Despite the fact that women receive less than 10% of VC funding, there are still an abundance of fast-growth women-led companies in the FI global portfolio. Watch to learn from Female Founders that are building interesting and growing technology businesses from across the Founder Institute network - learn about their companies, how they got started, their biggest lessons learned, and more:


Featured FI Alumni Panelists:

  • Abby Sugar, Founder & CEO of Play Out Apparel: Play Out offers clothing to help the LGBTQ+ community and Gen Z shop their authentic selves while supporting their values, to find and buy sexuality and gender-expression affirming apparel with ethical manufacturing, affordable price points, unique artistic designs, and an inclusive shopping experience. As a social good enterprise, Play Out donates 20% of net profits to LGBTQ+ and BLM nonprofit organizations. 
  • Laura Whitney Sniderman, Founder & CEO of Kinnd: Laura launched Kinnd seven months ago at the onset of COVID as a response to the growing epidemic of loneliness. Kinnd is a digital friend-making platform that positions generosity and reciprocity at the center of its friend-making methodology. Currently, Kinnd is a Facebook Group, soon to be app, that now has over 8000 members from 100 countries around the world. Laura has a Masters in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Columbia University and is a 2X Founder having previously run an International Womxn's retreat company for 6 years. 
  • Mariana Valesquez, Founder & CEO of Branddu: Branddu offers a new way to buy merchandising, providing a marketplace as direct distributors that brings together several suppliers in one place, offering more than 12,000 different products, immediate quotes, inventory display and the ability to immediately design your products. Branddu also carries a specialized line for COVID-19 products allowing brands to be present in times of crises. They also support social impact companies, encouraging micro-entrepreneurs and artisans to sell through their platform, offering them easy payments to finance themselves.


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Graduates of the Founder Institute are creating some of the world's fastest growing startups, having raised over $950M in funding, and building products people love across over 200 cities worldwide.

See the most recent news from our Grads at FI.co/news, or learn more about their stories at FI.co/journey.

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