NCWIT ENTREPRENEURIAL ALLIANCE JOINS WHITE HOUSE STARTUP AMERICA PARTNERSHIP

April 20, 2011

Helping High-growth Startups Capitalize on the Benefits of Women’s Participation

PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) Entrepreneurial Alliance, a nonprofit coalition sponsored by EMC2 that works to increase women’s participation in technology and computing, is joining the Startup America Partnership as a participant. The NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance has responded to President Obama’s call to action to promote high-growth entrepreneurship across the country and will work with the Startup America Partnership to ensure that high-tech startups have the research, practices, and community necessary to create and maintain a diverse and inclusive technical culture.

The NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance joins 22 other public and private organizations working to increase the prevalence and success of entrepreneurship in the United States. The Partnership is the private sector's response to the White House's Startup America campaign, which was launched in January 2011 to celebrate, inspire, and accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship throughout the nation. NCWIT’s role in the Startup America Partnership will include helping high-tech startups capitalize on the increased innovation and business benefits of gender diversity, and by promoting the achievements of women entrepreneurs.

“NCWIT is thrilled to be joining the Startup America Partnership and promoting the priorities of entrepreneurs and startups,” said Brad Feld, Chairman of the Board of NCWIT. “Women represent a vast, mostly untapped technology talent pool and a creative edge for startups; they are a game-changer for U.S. innovation.”

Women represent more than 50 percent of the American professional workforce and own more than 40 percent of private businesses in the U.S., yet they fill only 25 percent of technology jobs and start only 8 percent of technology companies. In contrast, research shows that tech companies with a higher representation of women in their management teams have a higher return on investment; that startups run by women use less capital and are more likely to survive the transition to established company; and that including women in a group is more likely to increase its collective intelligence, helping it solve problems better and faster than homogenous groups.

“The NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance helps growing tech companies plug into the movement to increase women’s participation in tech creator roles,” said Lucy Sanders, NCWIT CEO and Co-Founder. “NCWIT will work with the Startup America Partnership on the national level to make sure that technical startups receive the resources they need to successfully recruit, retain, and advance women in a way that enhances innovation and business.”

The NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance launches with the following member companies: AppliedTrust (Boulder, Colorado); Geomagic (Research Park Triangle, North Carolina); Get Satisfaction (San Francisco, California); Gowalla (Austin, Texas); Lijit (Boulder, Colorado); memeo (Santa Clara, California); Oblong Industries (Los Angeles, California); Return Path (New York, New York); SendGrid (Boulder, Colorado); Standing Cloud (Boulder, Colorado); Swiftpage (Englewood, Colorado); TaskRabbit (San Francisco, California); Twilio (San Francisco, California); and ViaWest (Denver, Colorado). NCWIT plans to grow the Entrepreneurial Alliance to 100 companies nationwide by the end of 2011.

About NCWIT

NCWIT is the National Center for Women & Information Technology, a non-profit coalition of 250 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and nonprofits working to increase women's participation in IT and computing. NCWIT helps organizations recruit, retain, and advance women from K-12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers; provides statistics, research, and best practices; and serves as a national voice of awareness and advocacy for the increased participation of girls and women in IT and computing. Find out more at http://www.ncwit.org.