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Blockchain Startups Led by Women Secure Just 6% of Total Investment Funds

Last Updated January 11, 2024 10:12 AM
Teuta Franjkovic
Last Updated January 11, 2024 10:12 AM

Key Takeaways

  • The funding for blockchain startups heavily decreased from early 2022 to the third quarter of 2023.
  • There is disproportionate funding for female-led startups.
  • Funding for female-led projects seems vulnerable to negative market changes and less responsive to positive trends.
  • The industry needs incubators dedicated to nurturing female-founded startups, promoting inclusivity and support.

Bitget, a crypto exchange, has unveiled a comprehensive study highlighting the gender disparity  in funding for blockchain startups.

This two-year project underscores the investment gap faced by female entrepreneurs in the blockchain domain.

Alarming Gender Gap Persists in Blockchain Startup Funding

The study, shared with CCN, wanted to spotlight gender inequality issues in the industry and explore avenues for addressing them.

The findings are revealing: blockchain startup funding saw a drastic 70.1% quarterly decline between the first quarter of 2022 and the third 2023.

During this period, blockchain startups amassed $27.85 billion in funding, but only 6.34% went to female-led enterprises.

There was a 45.2% drop in the number of female-led blockchain startups since early 2022, though there are signs of recovery.

Additionally, the proportion of female-led startups experienced a marginal increase, from 8.3% in 2022 to 8.6% by 2023’s third quarter. The study also found that female-led blockchain projects were more susceptible to negative market shifts and less responsive to bullish trends, highlighting the need for specialized incubators to nurture and support female-founded startups.

Male-Led Startups Dominate Funding, Highlighting Gender Gap

The report’s authors suggest that the ongoing funding disparity is influenced by general trends in startup investments , the overall state of the crypto market, investor sentiments, and notably, investor bias. A staggering 90% of funding has been directed towards male-led projects, showcasing a pronounced gender gap in investment decisions.

This gender bias in investment is not just a number. It profoundly affects the industry’s growth and diversity. Male-led startups attracted a total of $27.85 billion, while female-led blockchain startups managed to raise only $1.77 billion, a mere fraction of the total. Despite this, the share of female-led startups has seen a slight uptick from 8.3% in 2022 to 8.6% by Q3 of 2023.

Calling for Change, Citing Gender Bias in Blockchain Funding

Gracy Chen, the Managing Director of Bitget, reflected on the findings, saying:

“As a leader in the crypto industry, we acknowledge our responsibility to address uncomfortable truths and catalyze meaningful changes. The disparities illuminated by our study serve as a poignant reminder that we must proactively strive for an ecosystem where talent and potential are the sole criteria, devoid of gender bias. Our commitment remains resolute in fostering an inclusive environment, where everyone, regardless of gender, enjoys equal opportunities within this transformative sector.”

The Bitget report not only sheds light on the current state of affairs but also on dynamics within the industry. It emphasized the influence of investor sentiment on the viability of startups, shaped by the gender of the founder and market conditions.

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