Chick Launcher Names Finalists

Chick Launcher, the local effort to help bolster women led startups, has named the five finalists for its Fast Pitch Competition, the group said this week. Chick Launcher--which is awarding $10,000 in cash, and $48,000 in professional services as part of its competition--said that Double Helix LLC, led by Leslie Kimerling; HopSkipDrive, led by Joanna McFarland; I Heart Savvy, led by Bridie Lee; PodShare, led by Elvina Beck; and Repurpose, led by Lauren Gropper, are the five finalists up for winning its competition. Double Helix is working on 3D instrumentation; HopSkipDrive a ridesharing service for kids; I Heart Savvy is a wedding vendor marketplace; PodShare is developing co-living spaces; and Repurpose is developing eco friendly products. The group said it also has awarded $5,000 for the Best Fast Pitch presentation to I Heart Savvy.

Chick Launcher is aimed at raising awareness and visibility of women-led startups. The entrants to the competition had to have a woman co-founder, president or CEO, or be majority owned by women, but can be in any industry. The group said it will announce the winner on October 23rd. The effort looks to be the only effort to help startups led by women in the local industry. The worlds of technology, startups, finance, and business have long been criticized for lack of women, and the effort here is one of the few in Southern California trying to actively change that landscape.