Crowdfunding sites are a dime to a dozen these days, but here’s one that has a target group in mind – mompreneurs. That is, mothers who are also entrepreneurs.
Of course, mompreneurs have a unique challenge in that not only do they need to run their own businesses well, they also have to manage their homes and little ones as well. Raising funds for their own venture – almost always a time-consuming, energy-sapping task – would probably be even more tedious, and Mums Mean Business – the world’s first ever crowdfunding platform dedicated to helping aspiring and existing mumpreneurs raise the required funds to kickstart or further their businesses.
Built on a core belief that female entrepreneurship is no longer a gender issue but an economic issue, Mums Mean Business couples crowdfunding with a host of professional mentoring and business tools to help mums serious about business access both peer-to-peer investment and the resources necessary to start and grow a successful and sustainable enterprise. Founded by British/Congolese mother and entrepreneur Babou Olengha-Aaby, the platform will also provide free mentoring sessions for a year to all first time mumpreneurs whose pitches are successful.
And providing female entrepreneurs with much needed guidance in their critical first year of business may spell the difference between success and failure, believes Olengha-Aaby. “Mums Mean Business was conceived as a place to inspire mums and to be inspired by mums. It will help budding business leaders to harness the power of crowdfunding to finance their new companies, inventions and products.”
“It is no secret that investors and angels are often reluctant to invest in female owned enterprises with only 20.3% of European investors and a 1/3 of investors globally choosing to fund female owned businesses. The alternatives to finance for female entrepreneurs are few and far between. In contrast Global Entrepreneurship Monitor figures show that in 2010 alone, 187 million women worldwide started and owned their own business with mothers accounting for the majority,” she explains.
“These figures suggest there is a great potential and obvious need for a crowdfunding platform such as ours which is dedicated to providing an alternative and democratic source of funding to entrepreneurial mothers who are often bypassed by traditional lending sources.”
Like most other crowdfunding platforms, the site employs an all-or-nothing, rewards-based model that allows members of the public to back projects of their choice by pledging a financial investment in return for a selection of rewards. Investment will only be made if the project meets its funding goal within the target funding deadline that can be set at 30, 60 or 90 days. To be eligible to start a pitch on Mums Mean Business, project owners are required to be an aspiring or existing mumpreneur, over the age of 18 and a legal resident of an EU member state. The minimum funding goal for pitches is 5000 euros.