Community members on our Factory Berlin student membership.

EF, Google & Grace: Gender Diversity & Entrepreneurship


Jul 27th 2020
19:00 – 21:00


Online Video Stream

Building a company is hard but building a company as a female founder is harder. Why?

In Germany, women founders only make up 15.7% of the startup ecosystem and have to surmount considerable hurdles. These include gender bias in financing from investors and VCs, lower valuations and smaller investments, as well as exclusion from important networks that would help them grow and scale quicker. All of this despite study upon study showing that diverse teams are more productive and are more profitable. Is it that women are reluctant to found a startup? Are women still socialised differently? Or are the obstacles at times insurmountable?

This panel looks at the importance of diversity and representation in entrepreneurship and how more women can be enticed to think of starting their own businesses.

About Entrepreneur First

Entrepreneur First is the world's largest talent investor. We bring extraordinary individuals together to meet co-founders, create companies, and get funding. We have helped 1000+ founders build 150+ companies, with a combined valuation of over $2 billion.

Our major exits to date include Magic Pony, led by Rob Bishop and Zehan Wang, which was acquired by Twitter for a reported $150m only 18 months after the Founders met on the EF programme.

EF is backed by Reid Hoffman (founder of LinkedIn), Greylock Partners, Mosaic Ventures, Founders Fund, Lakestar Capital, and DeepMind founders Demis Hassabis and Mustafa Suleyman.

Show more Show less
Join the event

Leonie is Head of Program at Grace – Accelerate Female Entrepreneurship in Berlin. Prior to joining Grace she worked for a fintech company builder, for startups in the e-commerce sector and a venture capital firm.

In addition to her extensive startup experience she worked at global companies such as Vodafone, before that she began her career at the German Foreign Office. With this international and broad industry knowledge she is now dedicated to building a gender-diverse and entrepreneurial future.

Show more Show less

Philipp Herkelmann is the General Manager of Entrepreneur First Berlin. Previously he worked at Google and X and supported startups as Angel Investor and advisor.


Mayra Frank is responsible for the Germany strategy at Google for Startups. She is committed to fostering a more diverse startup community and supports female founders in Germany and Europe by promoting targeted programs and initiatives.

Prior to Google for Startups, Mayra worked on Google’s brand strategy in Silicon Valley and ran global philanthropic initiatives for Mayra has a background in communication, innovation management, and design thinking: She studied at the University of the Arts in Berlin and at Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design in London.

Show more Show less

Gesa is a Venture Partner in Berlin at Entrepreneur First. She is one of the founders of Auxxo Beteiligungen, an investment company mainly investing in business models that count on sustainable growth and founders that want to create societal added value.

A particular focus is placed on supporting female founders. Together with her partners at Auxxo, Gesa founded the Evangelistas, a group of 80+ female business angels in Germany. She is also a board member of the German Startups Association in an honorary capacity.

Show more Show less

Image and audio rights at Factory Berlin events

As part of Factory Berlin events, video, picture or audio recordings are made regularly. The attendee/guest agrees that the Factory Berlin or authorized third parties can create image and/or audio recordings of the attendee/guest during the events at any time and the attendee/guest agrees to such by visiting the respective event.

The attendee/guest consents irrevocably, unlimited in time and for any current and future audiovisual media in the free use, exploitation and distribution of image and/or audio of his/her person. This includes, but is not limited to, photographs, live broadcasts, broadcasts and/or recordings made by the Factory Berlin or its respective promoter or its agents in connection with the event and distributed on the Factory Berlin website or other means of communication.

Do you want to access our member-only events? Would you like to save on our event spaces?

Join our community as an individualstartup team, or corporate.

Apply Now