Launch Memphis, one of the key ecosystem drivers for startups in Tennessee, has launched a new initiative aimed at women entrepreneurs and startups. Getting more women engaged in startup communities is a goal that most cities are working on. Driving entrepreneurial growth among women is also a key factor in the overall health and success of an entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Launch Your City and their Memphis arm, Launch Memphis, are no strangers to the startup ecosystem. They’ve been the driving force behind Memphis’ startup and entrepreneurial growth since 2006. Launch Memphis runs a free coworking space; The LaunchPad, curriculum based initiatives through Launch Memphis and a startup accelerator in it’s third year, Seed Hatchery.
With the success of their most recent endeavors, including playing host to over a dozen Global Entrepreneurship Week events, now is the perfect time to announce a women’s initiative.
The kick off event for the women’s initiative, dubbed “UpStart” is a 48 Hour Launch event being held December 7-9th at Emerge Memphis. The three day hackathon style, startup launching vehicle has been so successful in Memphis, the folks in Nashville recently replicated the event for their startup community.
The UpStart 48 Hour Launch is open to both women and men to participate however the ideas pitched will be from women. These women entrepreneurs will drive their teams through 48 hours of hacking, collaborating and building a viable product.
Unlike many of the “official” Startup Weekend events, 48 Hour Launch is coupled with the existing resources of Launch Memphis and Emerge Memphis which serves as the epicenter for startup and entrepreneurial activity in the mid south.
“We recognize that the disparity between men’s and women’s high growth potential startup companies is not unique to Memphis; however, Memphis can be unique in our deliberate approach to close this gap and fuel women’s innovation and entrepreneurship”. Elizabeth Lemmonds, Chief Brand Officer at LaunchYourCity told nibletz.com
Danielle Inez, a successful PR, marketing and event planning consultant in Memphis is anxious to pitch her newest idea at the UpStart 48 Hour Launch in December. Inez was among hundreds who participated in Launch Memphis’ Risk City Field Day event last Friday as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week.
Inez took to Twitter on Tuesday to express her enthusiasm for both events.
Eric Mathews, Co-President and CEO of LaunchYourCity said: “We are making a commitment to cultivate and fund a woman led and majority woman owned startup by the end of the first quarter of next year. We encourage women to reach out and get involved in all levels of our platform as mentors, investors, and of course as potential founders.”
UpStart programming also includes a women’s meetup and plans on being a permanent fixture in the LaunchMemphis programming.