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Announcing SaaS Launch Lab with Project W to support pre-seed female founders

By Tamara Steffens

Project W burst onto M12’s radar last year when they co-hosted a “friendly feedback” Dolphin Tank pitch session for female founders near our Seattle office. An initiative of Davis Wright Tremaine, Project W is on a mission to help female founders build great companies and to help women take their place in the C-suite and the boardroom. From Women Entrepreneurs Boot Camps to the RiseTogether initiative for women in business and legal affairs in the entertainment industry, Project W continues to develop resources and community to propel the next wave of powerful women leaders.

Realizing gender equity in the funded founder ecosystem is an aspiration that M12 continues to pursue; our Female Founders Competition has been a meaningful pipeline for sourcing world-class enterprise software and deeptech startups founded by women. And recently, several M12 team members had the opportunity to share investing and business development strategies with female founders in the All Raise community as part of our National Partnership announcement and subsequent Action Plan Series of webinars. Those virtual presentations inspired our team to identify more ways to share our business experience and VC knowledge with early-stage female founders.

With shared gender equity ambitions, Project W and M12 have teamed up to present a program for promising pre-seed, female-led companies developing enterprise SaaS solutions: SaaS Launch Lab. The program is designed to help female founders refine their proof of concept, find the right product-market fit, build a team, and raise a seed round. A cohort of twelve companies will be selected for a series of five weekly virtual workshops, supplemented by one-on-one sessions with M12 investors. With webinars guided by faculty including Citibank’s Sarit Amir, Serval Ventures’s June W. Choi, and Chloe Capital’s Elisa Miller-Out, the program will be brimming with valuable insights and strategic guidance.

Applications are open now and will close on August 7, 2020. The program cohort will be announced on August 24, 2020. SaaS Launch Lab will run from September 12 — October 29, 2020.

We look forward to kicking off this initiative with Project W, and to supporting more female founders behind enterprise-disrupting startups. If you’re a female founder behind a pre-seed B2B SaaS company, please consider applying. Otherwise, please share these details with the female founders in your network.

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M12 - Microsoft’s Venture Fund

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M12 empowers entrepreneurs through investments, insight, and unparalleled access to Microsoft. https://m12.vc/

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