Female Founders News #10 – February 2024

Text: Ritah Ayebare Nyakato

Fernanda Barrence
In the ever-evolving Swiss startup landscape, success stories emerge across various fronts, showcasing the vibrancy and potential of the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

For female-led businesses, these achievements serve as an example to those aspiring to become entrepreneurs but also enable supporters to identify thriving businesses and role models.

Securing fresh funding is often a crucial milestone for startups, enabling them to scale operations and fuel product expansion. The Food and Beverages company Dropz, led by co-founder Sabrina Belestra, aims to supplement tap water with its dissolvable vitamin-enriched flavour cubes. The recently secured significant investment will propel the company’s journey towards enhanced offerings and market penetration. Similarly, Logmind received a substantial financial boost, accelerating its growth trajectory and reinforcing its position in the realm of data analytics and insights. Food Brewer, with its cocoa based on cultivated cell cultures, closed a CHF 5 million seed round while  FimmCyte, a spin-off company from the University of Zürich and the University Hospital Zürich cofounded by Valentina Vongrad, secured CHF 1 million as a convertible loan from the UZH Life Sciences Fund (LSF) to continue developing novel treatments for women’s health.

The support ecosystem in Switzerland also recognises innovative solutions, infusing funds in them to accelerate development. NovoViz’s breakthrough in computational imaging won it the Venture Kick Award and InnoBooster support, providing the company with a financial boost to advance its capabilities. Sefit, an early-stage project addressing the needs of individuals experiencing impaired stimulus filtering, is one of the recipients of the First Ventures funding. Openversum, which aims to provide clean drinking water in emerging countries by empowering local entrepreneurs to develop affordable water filters, won a grant as part of the Academia Industry Training.  HeroSupport, founded by Dr. Giovanna DiPasquale is developing medical devices to make cancer treatment more precise and effective. The startup secured a FIF seed loan of CHF 100,000. 

In forging strategic partnerships and securing lucrative deals, Arboloom and Navignostics exemplify their solutions’ market relevance. Arboloom’s partnership with industry giants like football club YB, demonstrates the real-world applicability of its disposable drinking cup made from wood veneer, while Navignostics‘ success in winning strategic partnerships with Standard BioTools Inc. drives clinical research applications and service offerings to foster personalized diagnostics for cancer patients. Zurich-based Kingfluencers with its strong female leadership in the core team pioneering the field of influencer marketing has entered a partnership with the Goldbach Group to create a joint „Influence Media Network“ to market their clients‘ advertising content across all channels.

Thanks to its partner network and customers, The Trip Boutique is thriving in its new business setting. Since 2017, co-founder Fernanda Barrence and her team have been providing a virtual travel advisor enabling travelers to customize their trips and receive recommendations curated with artificial intelligence (AI).

Fernanda Barrence
Fernanda Barrence – Co-founder of The Trip Boutique

The company’s strategic pivot towards B2B SaaS represents a bold step towards unlocking new revenue streams and expanding its market reach with customers in different segments. The co-founding duo of online supermarket Secend is also making strides in reducing food waste and waste overall in the retail sector by selling unwanted products from large retailers whose expiry date is close or due. The startup has grown its customer base to 30’000 users and reached a turnover of CHF 2 million in only two years.  For end consumers, the startups readon by Monika Fink and Sandra Kaufmann and  AYMA Clothing by Fabienne Kälin have expanded their assortment with ultralight reading glasses and sustainable leggings, respectively.

AYMA Leggings
AYMA Leggings

Olga Feldmier, co-founder and CEO of Smart Valor has also made a strategic decision to initiate the delisting process of the Company’s Swedish Depositary Receipts (SDRs) from trading on Nasdaq First North Premier Growth Market Stockholm. The startup is currently evaluating alternative markets where shares can be traded in the future, especially the emerging markets for tokenized securities.

Seeing women in C-Level roles expands the number of female role models in the ecosystem. Loft Dynamics, the provider of virtual reality (VR) flight simulation devices for training pilots has appointed a female Chief Service Officer (CSO). Sabrina Barbera has joined the leadership team to support the company’s market growth, including its recent market entry in the U.S.

Veröffentlicht am März 11, 2024

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