06/01/12 | Uncategorized

Female Founders To Follow In Fashion Tech Entrepreneurship

From ModCloth to Moda Operandi, these tech startups in the fashion space are founded by women to watch.

By Angie Chang (Co-Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Women 2.0)

Democratizing fashion has never been so venture-fundable.

With successes like Gilt Group and Ideeli, “a lot of women go to Harvard with the intent of working on the business side of fashion” said Snapette founder and CEO Sarah Paiji.

Earlier this year, Xconomy proclaimed that “early successes coming out of Harvard, embodied by flash sale company Gilt Groupe, cofounded by Alexandra Wilkis Wilson and Alexis Maybank (both HBS ’04), seemed to have created an energy among graduates.”

Venture capital firms, recognizing the strength of women as consumers and producers, are investing in fashion-oriented startups led by women. For one, Harrison Metal, founded by Michael Dearing, has invested in ModCloth, Polyvore, Joyus and Birchbox.

Here are some notable women entrepreneurs in the high-growth fashion tech space:

Áslaug Magnúsdóttir (Co-Founder & CEO, Moda Operandi)
An Icelandic native, Áslaug Magnúsdóttir co-founded Moda Operandi to disrupt the fashion industry and raised $10M Series B for the online luxury fashion retailer. Follow her on Twitter at @AslaugMO.

Jennifer Hyman (Co-Founder & CEO, Rent The Runway)
As a Harvard Business School student, Jennifer Hyman hatched the idea for Rent The Runway, a way to allow people to buy what they need without shopping for it. Follow her on Twitter at @Jenn_RTR.

Jess Lee (Co-Founder & CEO, Polyvore)
Combining her love for fashion and technology, computer science major and former Google product manager Jess Lee raised $14M Series C for Polyvore earlier this year. Follow her on Twitter at @jesskah.

Julie Wainwright (Founder & CEO, The RealReal)
Former CEO of Pets.com in 1999, Julie Wainwright is back with The RealReal for online luxury fashion consignment. She loves clothing with clean lines and high heels. Follow her on Twitter at @julieatrealreal.

Sukhinder Singh Cassidy (Founder & Chairman, Joyus)
Former Google VP Sukhinder Singh Cassidy started Joyus to help shoppers discover goods via short-form videos, raising a $7.9M Series A round led by Accel Partners. Follow her on Twitter at @sukhindersingh.

Susan Gregg Koger (Co-Founder & CCO, ModCloth)
Launched out of co-founder Susan Gregg Koger‘s Carnegie Mellon University dorm room, ModCloth is now venture-funded and headquartered in San Francisco. Follow her on Twitter at @susangkoger.

Tracy Sun (Co-Founder, PoshMark)
Fashion tech entrepreneur Tracy Sun co-founded PoshMark, a mobile peer-to-peer shopping platform which raised $3.5M Series A Funding led by the Mayfield Fund. Follow her on Twitter at @tracy_sun.

Let us know about more fashion tech women entrepreneurs in the comments below!

Angie Chang co-founded Women 2.0 in 2006. She currently serves as Editor-In-Chief of Women 2.0 and is working to mainstream women in high-growth, high-tech entrepreneurship. Previously, Angie held roles in product management and web UI design. In 2008, Angie launched Bay Area Girl Geek Dinners, asking that guys come as the “+1” for once. Angie holds a B.A. in English and Social Welfare from UC Berkeley. Follow her on Twitter at @thisgirlangie.

Anne-Gail Moreland

Anne-Gail Moreland

Anne-Gail Moreland, an intern with Women 2.0, was on the StartupBus. She studies neuroscience at Mount Holyoke College, where she is trying to merge a passion for tech and the brain into a new wave of cognition-based technology

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