A study conducted by UK Virtual Business Assistant firm SpareMyTime has unveiled a significant 83 percent increase in the number of female CEOs and women on boards in the UK since 2018.
The comprehensive analysis, which examined data from UK-based FTSE companies over the past five years, indicates a notable surge, particularly in the years 2021 and 2022.
SpareMyTime’s report comes at a time when there has been a staggering 1,850 percent increase in searches for ‘female founders’ in the past 12 months alone, with corresponding rises of 320 percent in ‘female founders initiative’ and 300 percent in searches for ‘female founders program.’
Femtech Dominates Growth
The study also sheds light on the burgeoning growth of female-founded industries, with a remarkable 1300 percent increase in femtech companies over the past decade. Beauhurst data reveals a growth from a single active femtech company in 2014 to 14 in 2023.
SpareMyTime has identified and ranked the top 5 fastest-growing female-founded companies in the UK based on their total funding amounts, with four out of the five spots occupied by femtech and sustainability startups.
The Top 5 Fastest-Growing Female-Founded Companies in the UK
- Elvie – Founder: Tania Boler – Industry: Femtech – Location: London – Total Funding: £124M
- Loop Technology – Founder: Samantha Reece – Industry: Robotics – Location: Dorset – Total Funding: £12.7M
- NovaBiotics – Founder: Deborah O’Neil – Industry: Biotech – Location: Aberdeen – Total Funding: £10.9M
- Mooncup – Founder: Su Hardy – Industry: Sustainable Menstrual Products – Location: Wirral – Total Funding: £10M
- Opna – Founder: Shilpika Gautam – Industry: Climate Fintech – Location: London – Total Funding: £5.2M
Melissa Gauge, Founder of SpareMyTime, expressed her enthusiasm about the success of these female-founded companies, emphasizing the growing strength of the UK tech scene and the increasing importance of diversity and inclusion in the industry.
Regional Impact and Growth
Examining female-founded businesses on a regional scale, the study highlights areas outside of London making significant contributions. Yorkshire and the Humber, for example, have contributed to a £3.5 billion turnover and employed 28,525 individuals. The East of England stands out with the highest investment at £213.6 million.
This study underscores the commitment of UK female founders to addressing real-world problems through technology, signalling a positive impact on the world. As the data reveals, the landscape of leadership and innovation in the UK is evolving, reflecting the growing influence of women in the business and tech sectors.
Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at the University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.