Women in the UK outperform men in seed crowdfunding - but men set higher funding goals

Rebecca Smith
A fifth of men hit their crowdfunding goal compared to a quarter of women
A fifth of UK men hit their crowdfunding goal compared to more than a quarter of women (Source: Getty)

While men use seed crowdfunding more than women, women are more successful at it, according to a new report from PwC and The Crowdfunding Centre.

It found that a fifth of male-led campaigns in the UK reached their finance target, compared with more than a quarter of female-led campaigns. Overall, campaigns led by women in the UK were 29 per cent more successful at hitting their funding target than those driven by men.

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The report findings, compiled from two years of seed crowdfunding data through 2015 and 2016, include the results of more than 19,000 seed crowdfunding campaigns from some of the largest platforms in the UK.

It also looked at crowdfunding across the globe, and found that women achieved greater success in all the regions analysed.

Crowdfunding allows firms to interact directly with the market and potentially thousands of would-be backers and customers, while seed crowdfunding is the use of "rewards based" platforms to fund the creation, launch or development of new businesses, products and services. Backers pay upfront for a product or service.

The report did though, also note that more men than women use seed crowdfunding, and as a result, raise substantially more finance through that route. The research found men were more ambitious in setting higher funding targets too, dominating the highest-funded campaigns by sector. Some 13 campaigns in the UK raised over $1m (£764m), but just two were led by women.

Suzi Woolfson. UK private business leader at PwC, said:

The UK is one of the most successful countries for seed crowdfunding in the world, but currently significantly more men than women are using this channel.

Becoming more engaged in crowdfunding and ambitious with finance raising goals offers a huge opportunity for female entrepreneurs.

Meanwhile, Barry E James, co-founder and chief executive of The Crowdfunding Centre, said: "That only half as many women currently embark on a crowdfunding campaign is undoubtedly a reflection of low expectations stemming from the same roots. So, in that light, it's time to readjust not just our expectation and perceptions but our attitudes, institutions, behaviours - and the way we make decisions."

Read more: The pros and cons of crowdfunding

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