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March wrap-up: 10 women-founded tech startups that received funding in Europe

Female founders Europe

As per Dealroom, over 85% of all funding has been pumped into teams that have only male founders in 2022. Over the past few years, this number has been almost consistent. Though the tech startup ecosystem is growing in recent years and reaching great heights, it remains to be dominated by men.

Reportedly, tech startups founded or co-founded by women raise relatively lesser funding than their male counterparts. When it comes to the European market, a meagre 2% of VC funds goes to the female teams.

During the month of International Women’s Day, we have already come across some interesting women-led startups that received funding. To recap on some of these companies, Luna Daily, a London-based intimate body care brand got £3.6 million in funding, Dutch startup Chargetrip secured €10 million, London fintech Abound grabbed £500 million, StudentFinance from Spain raised €39 million, and women-led Munich edtech Edurino scored €10.5 million.

That said, here TFN has listed 10 female-founded tech startups from Europe that raised funding in March, so far.

Open Utility (UK)

Open Utility founder
Image credits: Open Utility

Founder/s: James Johnston, Alice Tyler, Andy Kilner
Founded year: 2013
Total funding: $4.2M

With the mission to make electricity cheap, clean, and abundant, Open Utility aka Piclo, provides an online marketplace for buying and selling renewable energy. The platform connects solar panel owners or wind turbine operators with businesses and consumers who want to purchase renewable energy. Using blockchain, it creates a transparent and efficient way to trade renewable energy and accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy.

In a Series B funding round, the company raised £8.3 million to further strengthen its market leading position in the UK and Europe, as well as grow its international presence in the US, and Asia-Pacific. The investment round was co-led by Future Energy Ventures (FEV) and Clean Growth Fund (CGF) and saw participation from many others.

Landfolk (Denmark)

Landfolk founder
Image credits: Landfolk

Founder/s: Anders Boelskifte Mogensen, Cathrine Kastberg Reimann, Chris Kjær Sørensen, Christian Kastrup Schwarz Lausten
Founded year: 2020
Total funding: $5.3M

A short-term rental platform founded by Airbnb veterans, Landfolk, travelers can search for holiday homes, read descriptions, view pictures, check prices and more. Bookings can be done via the platform by making an online payment. The startup’s portfolio comprises over 1,000 homes and cabins in Denmark, Norway, and Germany.

Recently, the online community-based marketplace to book holiday homes and vacation rentals, picked up €3.8 million in seed funding from Seed Capital Denmark. The funds will be used to develop the product for easier interactions between homeowners and travelers.

Villoid (Norway)

Villoid founder
Image credits: Villoid

Founder/s: Jeanette Dyhre Kvisvik, Alexa Chung
Founded year: 2015
Total funding: $6.8M

Co-founded by a British model and television presenter, Villoid is a fashion-focused social media platform, which allows users to create their own virtual wardrobe, discover new fashion items, and share outfit ideas with friends and followers. Users can browse and buy clothing and accessories from a curated selection of fashion brands and retailers.

Operating with the mission to make fashion more accessible and fun for everyone, Villoid bagged NOK 24.7 million ($2.4 million) from Varner Gruppen.

Lunii (France)

Lunii founder
Image credits: Lunii

Founder/s: Maelle Chassard, Igor Krinbarg, Thomas Krinbarg
Founded year: 2014
Total funding: $13.1M

Lunii produces interactive audio toys designed for children. The company’s flagship product, “My Fabulous Storyteller”, is a device that allows children to create and listen to their own stories. Lunii’s goal is to encourage children’s creativity and imagination, as well as promote language learning and literacy skills.

The edtech startup scored €10.8 million in funding from Arjo, BNP Paribas Development, Educapital and the youth media group UHM. The funding should allow the company to continue to structure itself.

Tulipop (Iceland)

Tulipop founders
Image credits: Tulipop

Founder/s: Signy Kolbeinsdottir, Helga Arnadottir
Founded year: 2010
Total funding: $3.8M

Co-founded by two good friends, Tulipop is a character-based brand and design company from Iceland that creates unique and whimsical products for children and adults. It secured a contract with Zodiak Kids to develop an animated kids’ show that will bring the world of Tulipop to the televisions and touchpads of kids across the world.

Earlier this month, the fantasy world and lifestyle brand from Iceland led by women, raised $1.8 million from the Icelandic growth fund Eyrir Vöxtur.

Lunaphore Technologies (Switzerland)

Lunaphore Technologies founders
Image credits: Lunaphore Technologies

Founder/s: Ata Tuna Ciftlik, Diego Gabriel Dupouy, Déborah Heintze
Founded year: 2014
Total funding: $77.7M

The biotech startup, Lunaphore Technologies develops innovative solutions for cancer research and diagnostics. Its proprietary technology – Fast Fluidic Exchange, enables fast and accurate analysis of tissue samples, allowing researchers and pathologists to better understand the underlying biology of cancer. The platform is designed to improve the speed and efficiency of traditional tissue analysis methods, such as immunohistochemistry (IHC), by automating and simplifying the process.

With plans to strengthen its growing portfolio offering in spatial biology and support commercial execution to address ever-growing demand from customers, Lunaphore Technologies secured CHF 40 million in Series D1 funding. The round was led by Ernst-Göhner Stiftung Beteiligungen (EGSB), and existing investors. It also includes a €10 million venture debt facility from Norgine Ventures.

Open Payments (Sweden)

Open Payments co-founder
Image credits: Open Payments co-founder

Founder/s: Louise Brandt, Jonas Kjellin
Founded year: 2017
Total funding: $4.6M

Via its unique platform, Swedish fintech startup Open Payments offers a cutting-edge infrastructure required for Open Banking to become a reality. The popular Open Banking platform in the Nordics focuses on B2B transactions. The platform connects to commercial banks via API to enable services such as payments, account reconciliation and cash management.

Open Payments just closed a €3 million growth round led by Industrifonden alongside participation from Sony Financial Ventures – Global Brain’s venture capital fund and existing investors. The funds will be used for product development and expansion into Europe.

ARTHEx Biotech (Spain)

ARTHEx Biotech team
Image credits: ARTHEx Biotech

Founder/s: Beatriz Llamusí, Rubén Artero
Founded year: 2019
Total funding: $20.2M

ARTHEx Biotech is a spin-off biotech company from the University of Valencia. It is focused on the research and development of novel oligonucleotide therapies that modulate microRNA to treat diseases with unmet medical needs. Itts proprietary technology – ENTRY platform allows fast and flexible development of investigational miR-modulating oligonucleotides designed to enter relevant tissues in pharmacological quantities to treat diseases in which microRNAs play a key role.

The Spanish biotech company specialising in the treatment of diseases with unmet medical needs raised €11 million debt facility from the European Investment Bank (EIB), while it seeks to increase resources and open up new investors.

Lifeness (Norway)

Lifeness founders
Image credits: Lifeness

Founder/s: Solvor Øverlien Magi, Maria Arlén Larsen
Founded year: 2018
Total funding: $3.6M

A women-led startup co-founded by a doctor and an entrepreneur, Lifeness works with the mission to help people to a better quality of life through evidence-based technology for health professionals. Lifeness is a cloud-based follow-up system for health clinics to treat obese patients.

After nearly two years of hunting for capital, the healthtech company Lifeness snapped NOK30 million ($2.9 million) investment from Geir Linløkken.

Qida (Spain)

Qida team
Image credits: Qida

Founder/s: Oriol Fuertes Cabassa, Anna Montanes, Lluis Guitart Moya
Founded year: 2017
Total funding: $25.2M

Qida is a home care company that offers expert, personalised, and humane in-home care for elderly or dependent people. This procedure is carried out in accordance with the Individualized Work Plan (PTI), a comprehensive plan that incorporates the major international assessment scales in the health and social fields.

The services company for the senior segment at home grabbed €18 million, making it the largest investment in this sector in Spain. The investment came from Kibo Ventures, Ship2B Foundation, Creas and Fondo Bolsa Social.

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