Audrie Woodhouse speaking coach and founder of Honestly Speaking sat down in a chair smiling

Angel investment for female founders on International Women’s Day

Female founders of start-ups in York and North Yorkshire will pitch to ‘angel’ investors for funding to develop their business.

Treasury-commissioned research in 2019 found for every £1 of venture capital investment, only 1p goes to female entrepreneurs. In order to address this inequity, speaking consultant and business owner Audrie Woodhouse is teaming up with York & North Yorkshire Growth Hub, York St John University and an expert panel of investors to award budding business women up to £1000.

Successful applicants will also receive a free pitching workshop from Audrie Woodhouse herself, giving candidates the best possible chance on the big day.

“I’m really excited to be hosting this event with our partners as a celebration of women entrepreneurs” enthused Emma Rollason-Taylor, Business Relationship Manager at the York St John University Enterprise Centre. “Audrie is an accomplished coach so even if you don’t win any investment on the day the value you will gain from working with her will be excellent.”

Audrie shared:

“I have been a start up with no funding and I appreciate how hard it is! We wanted to organise an event where women who engaged with us would have access to key skills through training and a very real chance of winning funds to help support their business growth. I am so proud to be able to contribute to the success of women-owned start-ups by sharing my knowledge.”

One angel ready to invest is former Forecourt Trader of the Year winner Graham Kennedy, who has more than 30 years’ experience within the service station industry.

“I did my Masters degree with York St John, so it’s nice to give something back.” Graham said.

Giving guidance for prospective applicants, candidates are urged to offer unique and specific ideas.

“To get you started – Think about the problem your product solves, how you solve that problem in your unique way, who your customer is and how you will find them” recommended Audrie.

Graham likewise shared this advice: “Be focused on exactly how the prize will help you in your business or idea.”

To be eligible to apply for a pitching spot, candidates must be female founders (or owners) of a start-up business, operating for three years or less, with fewer than five employees and be based in York and North Yorkshire.

The ‘Embrace Equity’ pitching day will take place on International Women’s Day at York Marriott Hotel when all are welcome (men included) to watch the event in person and take part in networking.

Contact for more details. The deadline for applications in 17th February 2023.

Discover more events with York and North Yorkshire Growth Hub.