MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., June 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Springboard Enterprises, a national non-profit organization which hosts highly acclaimed educational programs and a venture forum featuring women-led emerging growth companies is gearing back up in the Bay Area, highlighted by two key events next week. During the week of June 16, which is shaping up to be women entrepreneurs week in the region, Springboard will host an alumnae gathering and a Growth Capital Workshop, [the first step in] the program's return to the Bay Area. Springboard will also announce a new partnership with the San-Francisco based Women's Technology Cluster to resume Springboard Venture Forums in the area in 2004. Springboard launched its program in Silicon Valley in 2000, in what remains for entrepreneurial companies as the mecca for venture capital. While the economy has been brutal to the region, the National Venture Capital Association recently reported that Silicon Valley venture funds account for one third of all venture investments made in the first quarter of 2003 or more investments than the next five major markets combined. The Bay Area remains fertile ground for the growing ranks of entrepreneurial women who are filling the pipeline from academia via corporations to entrepreneurial ventures. To date, 62 women entrepreneurs headquartered on the West Coast have presented their companies at Springboard Forums. With their 200 colleagues headquartered in New England, New York, Washington, D.C., Research Triangle Park, Texas and the Midwest, Springboard portfolio companies have raised $1 billion in venture capital. 80 percent of these companies continue to grow and while most Springboard alumnae are still associated with the companies they presented at Springboard, others have gone on to launch new ventures or assume leadership roles in other companies. "The track record to date of Springboard portfolio companies has been very impressive and Springboard alumnae are an incredibly talented and experienced pool of women innovators," said Kay Koplovitz, chair of Springboard Enterprises. "While they are outperforming the market to date, they recognize that managing growth and succession remains their most compelling challenge. Just as we've done to prepare them for the equity markets, we want to bring the resources to the table to support the next wave of their development." Springboard has been hosting gatherings of its alumnae in major markets across the country. The first gathering for West Coast alumnae is scheduled for June 16 in Mountain View at the offices of the law firm of Fenwick and West. On June 17, following the Alumnae Gathering, Springboard has invited the area's women-led companies to attend a Growth Capital Workshop co-hosted by The Lester Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at UC Berkeley and The Women's Technology Cluster. "We are delighted to bring Springboard back to the Bay area, convening our network of investors, entrepreneurs and service providers and working with The Lester Center at UC Berkeley and the Women's Tech Cluster," said Amy Millman, president of Springboard. About Springboard Enterprises SPRINGBOARD ENTERPRISES is a national non profit organization dedicated to accelerating women's access to the equity markets. The organization produces programs that educate, showcase and support entrepreneurs as they seek equity capital and grow their companies. Since 2000, nearly 300 companies have presented their businesses to investors at Springboard events and have raised $1 billion in equity capital. For more information, visit www.springboardenterprises.org.
SOURCE Springboard Enterprises