The Female Founders Startup Challenge

On the 19 & 20 July, unbound London will welcome 5,000 founders, entrepreneurs, investors, corporate & brand executives and opinion-formers to the iconic Old Truman Brewery for a two-day celebration of innovation. The festival connects you with sources of innovation from around the world. Truly cross-industry, unbound London is the bridge between business and the world’s digital and technological pioneers.

This year, the festival prepares to host some of Europe’s leading Female Founders in a challenge to prove their startups’ prowess.

In a world fighting disparity between the sexes, the technology sector is still suffering. Women make up just 14% of founders and entrepreneurs throughout the UK – our aim is to change that. The Female Founders Startup Challenge invites eight top entrepreneurs from across Europe to take part in a live, interactive and inspiring competition.

When: 19 July 2017  – 16:50    Where: main stage

The Prize:

A place on Beluga Bean Launch


If you want to launch or re-launch your business, Beluga Bean Launch is for you. The programme is a one-year mentoring journey led by Planet Organic Founder, Renée Elliott, and Life Coach and Thrive Global facilitator, Sam Wigan. Held in London, Launch consists of one day each month, covering all aspects of business planning to create or re-strategise your business PLUS the personal discovery designed to remove barriers and create ease. A whole person process that supports you in your business and personal success, Beluga Bean Launch is not so much an incubator or accelerator, but more of a greenhouse. More information about Beluga Bean Launch click here.

This prize is worth £4,800 inc vat.


The winner of the startup competition will also receive a free six month subscription to Bloom & Wild flowers. The deadline for applications is July 9th. The finalists will receive a free entry ticket to come to unbound.

We have closed applications and selected our 8 finalists (see below).


16:50 Welcome by Renee Elliot, co-founder Beluga Bean
16:55 8 x Startup Pitches 3 min each + 2 min Q&A
17:35 Jury deliberation
17:50 Winner announcement by Renee Elliot

The Jury

Watch the video

Held in partnership with Ada’s list, Women of WearablesDevelopHer, Blooming Founders and Forward Ladies.

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WoW is UK’s and Europe’s first organisation that inspires, supports and connects women in wearable tech, fashion tech, IoT and VR/AR by providing visibility, support, mentorship and connections for our community through our events and wearable tech workshops. Its mission is to encourage more women and diverse teams to participate in building hardware and software products as designers, product managers and developers or being founders of their own companies, as well as create more jobs for women in STEM.

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Ada’s list is a group for women who are committed to changing the tech industry. They’re a group of 2000+ badass people who broadly speaking, work in science, technology, engineering or mathematics. A.K.A:  work in or around the internet.

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Founded in 2015, Blooming Founders exist to create a support infrastructure that fulfils the needs of female founders. Our vision is to break down the barriers that hold female entrepreneurs back and enable them to build big businesses. We do this by helping them to connect with the right contacts, information content and access to a network of founders and investors. Our ethos is about unleashing the potential of female founders entrepreneurs and creating equal opportunities, not building a women-only platform.

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DevelopHer exists to elevate women in technology. They are a non-profit community dedicated to bringing women together to drive opportunities, develop confidence, and create a network of support through events, networking, and learning.




Since 1999, Forward Ladies has worked closely with some of the biggest names in business, creating innovative events and programmes designed to help women achieve their individual aspirations – which also helps companies to achieve much-needed diversity in leadership and the wider business community. Our high profile clients include HSBC, Yorkshire Water, Sage UK, United Utilities and Hitachi Rail who trust us to deliver bespoke female friendly programmes to complement other initiatives; catering to their female staff, customers and suppliers.