Women will start, shape, and build the future of Aotearoa industry, but change needs to come faster.

That’s the rallying call for Electrify Aotearoa, an all-day national conference taking place in Christchurch, February 17. Spearheaded by Ministry of Awesome and Blackbird Ventures, the event brings together Aotearoa’s leading founders, aspiring entrepreneurs, and early-stage startups for a day of inspiration, strategy, and connection.

“Many of our country’s most important high growth startups are woman led and we need many more women to follow suit to ensure our country’s future success and leadership on a global stage. Electrify Aotearoa is designed to send an electric shock through the startup community and get more of our inspiring wāhine turning their big ideas into world changing companies,” said Marian Johnson, CEO of Ministry of Awesome, and organiser of the Electrify Aotearoa event.

Globally, women only represent one in every four startup founders, despite research showing women-led startups are more capital-efficient, achieve 35% higher return on investment, and, when venture-backed, bring in 12% higher revenue than male-owned tech companies.

“We’re partnering with the Ministry of Awesome to encourage more ambitious Kiwi women to take the leap into startups. By showcasing women founders and operators at different stages of their journey, we are hoping to inspire others with tales of courage and triumph,” said Samantha Wong, General Partner at Blackbird Ventures.

Electrify Aotearoa aims to help establish a foundational network for women entrepreneurs, New Zealand’s top investors and venture capital companies. The network seeks to form a pathway for more women founders to activate and succeed with a powerful community supporting them.

The conference will involve keynotes and masterclasses led by the movers and shakers of Aotearoa’s startup scene including Sharesies’ Brooke Roberts, Yabble’s Kathryn Topp, Outset DeepTech’s Imche Fourie, and Alliv Samson, co-founder and COO of Kami – the world’s #1 digital classroom platform. Together they will share personal stories, showcase vulnerability during challenging times and roadmap future woman entrepreneurs’ success.

The event is being backed by organisations from the startup and innovation ecosystem, including MBIE, Callaghan Innovation, New Zealand Growth Capital Partners, University Of Canterbury – Centre of Entrepreneurship, AANZ, Hillfarrance, AWS, ASB, NZX, MYOB, Stripe, and LegalVision.

Whether you’ve got startup ambition, are just getting started, or are already going global – Electrify Aotearoa invites you to come and meet your home team, get connected, and get growing.

Electrify Aotearoa will take place on 17 February 2022, at Isaac Theatre Royal in Christchurch. Get tickets now.

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