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In a new endeavor for HearstLab and San Antonio Express-News, the region’s most innovative entrepreneurs took center stage.
— Lisa Gillespie, VP of Marketing, San Antonio Express-News
SAN ANTONIO, TX, USA, July 29, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ — Three women-led startups were named winners at HearstLab’s first-ever pitch event, Pitch HearstLab: Texas, which took place on June 23rd. Out of over 140 applications from female startups founders based in southern states, six companies were selected as finalists to present in-person at the historic Tobin Center for the Performing Arts.
The finalists, who hailed from Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas, represented verticals ranging from marketing and e-commerce to real estate, health, and digital production. The event, which was produced in partnership with the San Antonio Express-News, saw each founder presenting before a panel of expert judges, including Hearst EVP & HearstLab Chairwoman Eve Burton, as well as San Antonio Express-News Publisher and CEO Mark Medici.
The event’s winners were as follows: Clutch, a marketplace for employing social media creators with small businesses; Ema, an AI-led wellness ecosystem that supports women from fertility to menopause; and Junum, whose first product allows physicians to quickly identify and treat malnutrition. In addition to a $100,000 investment from HearstLab, each winning company will also receive support services from both HearstLab and the San Antonio Express-News.
With the success of the first event, both HearstLab and San Antonio Express-News envision more on the horizon. “Pitch HearstLab: Texas has been more than a competition,” says Lisa Burton O’Toole, HearstLab Vice President. “It’s really been about nurturing local communities of female entrepreneurs, and extending the HearstLab mission even further. We’ve had the privilege of connecting with so many innovative women, and I look forward to continuing to expand to other areas.” San Antonio Express-News VP of Marketing and New Business Development, Lisa Gillespie, agrees; “By continuing to build on this foundation, my hope is that programs like this empower other investors and community leaders, leading to additional successes in San Antonio and the surrounding areas.”
In addition to serving as a catalyst for further community investments, the direct results of the event will have a positive local impact. “Unrecognized malnutrition affects millions of hospitalized patients each year,” says Junum Founder and CEO Molly Hegarty. “We are honored to join the HearstLab portfolio in order to bring better malnutrition treatment and significant revenue generation to hospitals in more healthcare systems.”
The competition’s winners also note that the unique support that HearstLab provides was a factor in deciding to participate. “Our team knew the importance of being backed by investors who deeply understand the problem we’re solving,” says Madison Long, CEO and Co-Founder of Clutch. “HearstLab’s investment further equips Clutch to elevate businesses’ digital marketing by connecting them to next-gen creators with [HearstLab’s] dedicated resources and support.” Amanda Ducach, CEO and Co-Founder of Ema, echoes the sentiment; “We are so proud to have a company like HearstLab as a partner. Capital is always important to continue to grow, but HearstLab’s future mentorship via resources and networking connections will prove to be fundamental as we scale.”
HearstLab provides cash investments and services to early-stage, women-led startups innovating across fintech, data analytics, health, transportation, enterprise technology and media. Its mission is to close the gap in VC funding for women by helping founders build sustainable and highly scalable businesses. With access to Hearst resources across 360+ businesses, HearstLab’s breadth of services includes assistance with privacy and security, software development, legal services, financial analysis, and marketing and design support. To learn more about HearstLab, visit HearstLab.com and connect with us on LinkedIn.
More Than an Accelerator for Female Founders – This is HearstLab