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“Women Help Women” – Angels of the North Investment Forum

On a mild November morning at the Queens Hotel in Leeds, some of the most powerful female investors gathered for the Women Angels of the North Investment Forum, ready to raise awareness about the lack of female Angel Investors. Halston Marketing were lucky enough to be a partner involved with setting up the forum. In addition, we were invited to exhibit – our director, Georgia Halston, is a great example of northern, female entrepreneurship.

Throughout the day, Jenny Tooth OBE, Chief Executive of The UK Business Angels Association, hosted a number of pertinent and encouraging panels. This allowed business-owners and angel investors to highlight some of the challenges women in business face in contemporary UK, and more specifically in the north. The themes that arose during these discussions highlighted the immense need for change while remaining entirely inspiring for women everywhere.

Why Here? Why Now?

There’s an undeniable need for change.

“Fifteen per-cent of angel investors are women,” Tooth told the audience. On top of that, “investing is a minority sport in the North.” This is surprising considering the vast opportunity in the north of England, says Eve Roodhouse, Chief Officer of Economic Development in Leeds City Council.

Within the northern investment scene, there is a need for immediate attention and diversification. By coming up with new ways of evening the gender playing field, we can encourage women at the start of their careers to build impressive investment portfolios. This strategy has the potential to boost the economy in ways the current industry model remains ignorant to: “Women investors help women entrepreneurs.” And as more female investors look to the north for other female innovators, cities such as Leeds could see massive positive change to the work environment and economy.

“Company boards are more successful with women on their teams.” – Lynne McGregor, Innovation Lead in High Value Manufacturing. 

Tooth left audiences with a succinct reminder – “men are part of the solution” in solving inequality.

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