Eight aspirational female-led Scottish companies have been shortlisted as finalists for this year’s AccelerateHER Awards.
They include Glasgow-based businesses All Day Designs, makers of a toddler pushchair which converts into a trike, Cedeco Contractors, developers of an offshore wind turbine installation solution, Empowered Earth, an app for managing and tracking symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, and Staels Design, creators of an air filtration system for wheelchair users.
Edinburgh-based companies SnapDragon Monitoring, which monitors on-line markets for IP infringements, and Criton, developers of an on-demand guest service app for the hospitality sector, were also selected for the next round of the awards. Joining them on the shortlist were two Midlothian-based life sciences businesses: Biotangents, developers of a diagnostics system for infectious livestock diseases, and Cytochroma, creators of a new means of testing new drugs for liver toxicity.
The finalists were announced following pitches by 17 semi-finalists to the AccelerateHER Awards judging panel. Three award winners will be revealed at a finals event on 9 May at Barclay’s Eagle Lab within Edinburgh’s Codebase. This year’s programme will also include a new ‘Rising Star’ category recognising a female company founder with a great early stage business idea.
The winners will be offered a free place on a trade mission to Dubai or Berlin where they will showcase their business, be introduced to key industry contacts and investors, and build their understanding of how best to target these and other global markets.
Now in their fourth year, the AccelerateHER Awards are sponsored by Barclays and global IT and business support services provider CGI. Organised by Scotland’s only all-female business angel group Investing Women, the awards programme is designed to inspire and support more female-led companies in Scotland. Open to female business founders playing a leading role in companies with strong global growth potential, the programme provides an ideal platform for them to connect with Investing Women’s network of angel investors, commercial advisers and other successful entrepreneurs. To date, more than 500 businesswomen have joined the AccelerateHER community.
Jackie Waring, CEO of Investing Women said: “I congratulate all the finalists and wish them luck as we progress to the final round of this year’s AccelerateHER Awards. With this year’s focus on more developed, scalable businesses, we were delighted with both the number and quality of entrants. We are particularly encouraged by the level of entries from female-led businesses in key industries such as life sciences and technology, a sector where representation amongst women continues to be low.
“All of these finalists demonstrate the immense entrepreneurial achievements of women across Scotland. We are pleased to offer our support as they seek to grow their businesses. We are also immensely proud of the positive and significant impact the AccelerateHER Awards continue to have on female-led companies in Scotland. Participants from the four years we’ve run the competition have now gone on to secure nearly £7m of investment since getting involved in the programme.”