Paris-born Valerie Holstein had a difficult time finding a place where she felt she belonged from the time she first came to the U.S. to attend college in 1993. Though she settled domestically in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and married her fiancé, she continuously searched for the professional opportunity that would allow her to travel home for a month at a time each year, and for a place that would provide her with comfortable work despite the fact that English was her second language. >>>
There has been tremendous sensationalizing of the women and entrepreneurship issue. Self-proclaimed (male) pundits pontificate on how women entrepreneurs face tremendous obstacles and huge prejudice.
A blog post that I wrote on the subject in October 2010 still garners readership and discussions. Meanwhile, our 1M/1M virtual incubator continues to work with women entrepreneurs actively, and I am happy to report that women are starting up companies, and building interesting businesses ranging from healthcare IT to e-commerce, and everything in between. >>>
Pregnant women struggle with clothing over the term of their pregnancy, with some spending a fortune on new maternity clothes, others borrowing a friend’s maternity clothes, and a few buying cheaper, larger clothes that barely fit. >>>
Collis and Cyan Ta’eed are the founders of Envato, an online creative marketplace. They founded Envato together after having ran a freelance design agency together out of Australia. Collis studied math and science while Cyan earned her degree in design.
Sramana: Let’s start at the beginning of your personal stories. What leads up to Envato?
Collis Ta’eed: I am half Iranian and half English. My father is from Iran and my mother is from Yorkshire. I grew up in Papua New Guinea, which was one of the last places to be reached by the outside world. >>>
Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software, and he is also the originator of plan-as-you-go business planning. He writes at Planning, Startups, Stories, one of the most popular small business blogs.
Sabrina Parsons has served as the CEO of Palo Alto Software since 2007. Prior to this role she co-founded a software company with her husband in 2001, a company that was purchased by Palo Alto Software in 2002. She is the president of the Princeton Entrepreneurs Network and a significant supporter of entrepreneurs. She blogs as MommyCEO.org.
Sramana: Tim, let’s start at the beginning of your story. Where are you from?
Tim Berry: I started adult life with a masters in journalism. My goal was to have a great journalism career. I started with United Press International, which was very well known back in the 1970s. It was wire service journalism, and I was in Mexico City covering hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, kidnappings, and so on. I was young and it was a fun job. It did not pay anything, but I loved it. >>>
Today’s roundtable was a women-only affair, with WITI (Women In Technology International) San Diego entrepreneurs leading the way.
But before we dive into the pitches, let me point you to the opportunity with BlueSnap and Elance, which are awarding 12 1M/1M scholarships to digital commerce and subscription businesses. Deadline for applications is May 11.
First, Felena Hanson from San Diego, CA, pitched Hera Hub, a co-working space in the San Diego area that has 140 women working together in what she calls a ‘spa-like’ environment. Many of these women are freelancers, solopreneurs, writers, etc., and enjoy the community that Hera Hub has created. Felena will be launching two more hubs in San Diego and then wants to franchise the concept in other cities.
Victoria has been an entrepreneur since her early twenties and has developed three companies. As founder and CEO of Wildfire (www.wildfireapp.com), Victoria led the company to profitability in just one year and has built the company to tens of thousands of customers, over 250 employees, and eight offices worldwide. Clients include major brands and agencies such as Facebook, Pepsi, Unilever, Sony, AT&T, Ogilvy, Publicis, and Digitas. Wildfire is a two-time winner of the fbFund; investors include Summit, Facebook, Accel Partners, and the Founder’s Fund. Victoria has been featured in several publications including The New York Times, CNN, and The Wall Street Journal. She was named one of the ’25 Women to Watch in Tech’ for 2011 and 2010 and was named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year for New Zealand. Victoria has spoken at numerous events, including Le Web, SXSW, OMMA, AlwaysOn, Ad:tech, and Web 2.0.
Sramana: Victoria, let’s start at the very beginning of your story. Where do you come from?
Victoria Ransom: I grew up on a farm in New Zealand in the middle of nowhere. There were 25 students in my primary school. It was a wonderful upbringing, and it was very beautiful. It was a very supportive environment and a small environment. I felt I could do anything. >>>
Do you dream of starting a business? Have an idea but not sure what to do next?
Sramana Mitra will be moderating a panel, Entrepreneurship: The Real Stories of Getting Started, during the University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business’ Women In Leadership Conference on Saturday, March 3, 2012, at 10:30 a.m.
This panel will share the real, honest stories of successful women entrepreneurs. Whether they got venture funding, participated in an incubator, or bootstrapped their venture, they’ve all had exciting successes and tough challenges. Hear about both, and learn how to find your own unique path to entrepreneurship. You can find more details and REGISTER HERE.
The topic of women and entrepreneurship has been getting a lot of attention of late. Vivek Wadhwa has been leading the charge from TechCrunch. Yesterday, I read an article by Penelope Trunk on TechCrunch that argues that you cannot be an entrepreneur and bear and raise children, have a successful relationship, and have a balanced life.
I generally avoid commenting on this issue, but Vivek has often egged me on to say things, at least in private discussions. Vivek is a good friend, and I believe that he is trying to do something meaningful to help move this debate forward.
So, today, I am going to say a few things on the topic. >>>