The Silent Rise Of The Female-Driven Economy

Women represent the largest disruptive force in business  —  and the business world is unprepared. Currently we are the largest unserved market in business. Put very simply, most of the structures, design, technology and products we interact with are designed with male as the default: For example, designing a “personal assistant” AI with a female interface, i.e. — Alexa, Siri, Amy. The news we read is produced by male-dominated environments. Not to mention the innocuous daily toils of using products that were designed for men.


With the recent success of companies like The Honest Company and Thinx, we’re seeing a new rise of women-centered innovation: products and services designed for women by women, based on the pain points women experience in daily life. The investment ecosystem is unprepared to understand this opportunity, much less identify, invest in, and nurture this next generation of companies. The coming shift will have deep implications for the role women will play in the future of business, tech, and innovation.




Women represent the largest disruptive force in business  —  and the business world is unprepared. Currently we are the largest unserved market in business. Put very simply, most of the structures, design, technology and products we interact with are designed with male as the default: For example, designing a “personal assistant” AI with a female interface, i.e. — Alexa, Siri, Amy. The news we read is produced by male-dominated environments. Not to mention the innocuous daily toils of using products that were designed for men.


With the recent success of companies like The Honest Company and Thinx, we’re seeing a new rise of women-centered innovation: products and services designed for women by women, based on the pain points women experience in daily life. The investment ecosystem is unprepared to understand this opportunity, much less identify, invest in, and nurture this next generation of companies. The coming shift will have deep implications for the role women will play in the future of business, tech, and innovation.


Even though women are half the population, we live in a world where it’s taken for granted that the male perspective should be centered. This invisible bias is “coded patriarchy,” and it shapes our daily lives. As a result, the female perspective is quietly omitted in design, business, media, technology, clothing — and even our cities. Take something as simple as entering your office each morning: The average woman struggles to open doors when going in and out of buildings — because most doors are designed for the tensile strength of an average man. Or even your drive to work: When airbags were first released, hundreds of women and children were injured or killed when the bags deployed. The reason? The group of male engineers who designed them were all over 250 lbs and didn’t think to test for women. Forward-thinking industries like tech can be just as stuck in the past: Of the top health trackers (Apple, Fitbit, Nike)  —  not one had a period tracker at release, even though half of the target customer base tracks periods as part of their normal health routine, and health trackers are primarily used by women.


The result of all of this is that men move through the world unaware that it’s been designed for their comfort, and women move through the world encountering small points of friction or discomfort daily, or pain points.


Women are the single largest productive economic force, and drive almost every economic indicator for businesses. But that’s not the impression we get when we read economic data or view advertising.


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