Women entrepreneurs are paving the way toward a brighter future.
Jocelyn Leavitt created an app, Hopscotch, that makes it accessible (and cool) for kids to learn coding.
Amy Cross has worked to promote gender equality by transparently evaluating diversity and fairness policies of American companies with her app, Gender Fair.
Across industries, females are making strides and creating successful businesses.
Get inspired with these 20 women entrepreneurs that prove there are unicorns among us.
1. Reshma Saujani: Girls Who Code
Reshma Saujani launched the non-profit organization Girls Who Code in 2012 in an effort to close the gender gap in technology.
Saujani’s company has helped almost 90,000 high school and middle school girls explore the world of coding through free after-school programs and summer intensives.
2. Whitney Wolfe: Bumble
Whitney Wolfe is the founder of two of the most recognizable dating apps in the world: Tinder and Bumble.
She left Tinder in 2014 to launch Bumble, which was created with equality and empowerment in mind.
Case in point: when members of the opposite sex are matched, women are required to make the initial contact in an effort to “shift old-fashioned power dynamics and encourage equality from the start.”
Bumble is valued at more than $1 billion, and Wolfe’s personal net worth is valued at $250 million.
3. Payal Kadakia: ClassPass
MIT graduate Payal Kadakia revolutionized the way people find and register for fitness classes.
She created CassPass in 2011 after she tried to find a ballet class in New York City for more than an hour with no luck.
That gave her the idea to create a better system to find and book fitness classes.
Since 2011, more than 45 million classes have been reserved through ClassPass, which is valued at more than $500 million.
Kadakia’s personal net worth is more than $50 million.
4. Mathilde Collin: Front
In an effort to streamline workflow and minimize distractions, Mathilde Collin created Front in 2013.
Front is an app that fosters better communication by merging emails, Slack messages, texts and social media messages all into one channel, meaning there are less logins, redundancy, headaches and wasted time.
Earlier this year, Collin raised $66 million in Series B funding for Front.
5. Danielle Weisberg: theSkimm
Since 2012, Danielle Weisberg has been working to reinvent news geared towards millennials.
Alongside her business partner Carly Zakin, Weisberg created theSkimm, a daily newsletter that breaks down important current events into digestible content.
It’s so popular that even Oprah is a subscriber!
6. Amy Cross: Gender Fair
Amy Cross is the founder of Gender Fair, an app that rates companies based on gender equality and women’s role in the workplace.
Cross hopes her app will empower females when they’re looking at which brands to support.
7. Marah Lidey: Shine
Marah Lidey’s app, Shine, sends positive affirmations to users and celebrates self care.
Alongside co-founder Naomi Hirabayashi, Lindey also included meditations, 7-day challenges and articles on the app to promote stress-free lifestyles.
Since launching in 2016, over 500,000 people across 165 countries have turned to Shine to brighten up their day.
8. Katrina Lake: Stitch Fix
Katrina Lake founded Stitch Fix in 2011, backed with a $750,000 investment for her fashion-forward idea.
Lake’s business gives shoppers a personal styling experience online and ships clothing directly to their door, cutting out the hassle of going to stores and the frustration of blindly putting together outfits.
9. Jocelyn Leavitt: Hopscotch
Do your kids want to learn how to code?
There’s an app for that!
Jocelyn Leavitt cofounded Hopscotch, an app for children that allows them to play and create games through coding.
10. Alexandra Cavoulacos: The Muse
Alexandra Cavoulacos is co-founder and president of The Muse, a career-focused website.
The Muse can connect you with a career coach, identify and land your dream job, navigate raise requests and interviews, and explore companies.
Cavoulacos and her company have helped more than 50 million people search for jobs on her website.
11. Clara Shih: Hearsay
After Clara Shih recognized that digital communication is a smarter avenue to develop company and customer relationships, she created the company Hearsay in 2009.
Hearsay offers four different products that allow financial advisors to reach customers through platforms such as text, email and social media.
12. Amanda Spann: Blerdology
When Amanda Spann wanted to involve more African Americans in the coding and tech industry, she and her business partner, Kat Calvin, created Blerdology.
As Blerdology’s co-founder and CMO, Spann’s enterprise has helped pave the way for African American developers to have a seat at the table.
13. Colleen Becker: Sampson Solutions
If you’ve heard Colleen Becker’s name recently, it may be because her startup, Sampson Solutions, won a $35,000 prize at the 2018 Women Startup Challenge Europe.
Sampson Solutions creates bio-based construction material from renewable resources.
14. Elizabeth Reede: Boulevard
After working as an assistant curator at New York City’s Museum of Modern Art, Elizabeth Reede became interested in reinventing what it means to study art.
With that in mind, she created Boulevard.
Boulevard gives users the opportunity to learn about historic art pieces and explore museums through augmented reality, regardless of physical location or access.
15. Martha Lane-Fox: Doteveryone
Martha Lane-Fox started her journey at the beginning of the tech boom in 1998.
Her first business venture, lastminute.com, became Europe’s largest travel website and sold for over $750 million.
In 2015, Lane-Fox founded Doteveryone, a think tank that encourages innovations designed to improve the world, empower individuals and promote responsible policy making.
16. Nonny de la Peña: Emblematic
Investigative journalist Nonny de la Peña brings news and technology together with her company Emblematic.
Emblematic is a leader in immersive media, using VR to put the reader inside stories.
Peña’s work has been showcased at the Sundance Film Festival.
17. Ruzwana Bashir: Peek
Founder and CEO Ruzwana Bashir created her company, Peek, in order to give users a specialized list of travel activities when exploring new places.
With the ability to easily find boats and cruises, workshops, sightseeing tours and water sports, Bashir’s Peek can leave anyone with a case of wanderlust.
18. Morgan DeBaun: Blavity
Morgan DeBaun created the website Blavity in an effort to better represent black culture in the media.
Blavity highlights news, politics, tech and opinion stories that give stronger representation to black millennials.
DeBaun’s website currently attracts more than 7 million people a month.
19. Melissa Jun Rowley: The Toolbox, Resolve and Jasmine
Melissa Jun Rowley is the founder of not one, but three tech companies: The Toolbox, Resolve and Jasmine.
The Toolbox is a site that aids users with information and resources to become socially active, while Resolve promotes startups working to make global change.
Her most recent business venture, Jasmine, was created in 2018 and gives female entrepreneurs in the Middle East and Africa access to new resources and mentors.
20. Lauren Washington: KeepUp and Black Women Talk Tech
Founder Lauren Washington is working to change the online world with KeepUp.
KeepUp allows users to manage all of their social media profiles on one platform, a helpful tool for influencers and businesses alike.
Washington is also the co-founder of Black Women Talk Tech, which acts as a collective for black women in tech.
Inspiring, right? These women entrepreneurs are making a difference in the world around them and leading the way for the next generation to follow in their footsteps.
Be a Unicorn in a Sea of Donkeys
Get my very best Unicorn marketing & entrepreneurship growth hacks:
About the Author
Originally published on Inc.com