20 of Europe’s most influential female startup voices to follow on Twitter

Influential-Female-Startup-Voices-Twitter

Women are no doubt still severely under-represented and have a long way to go towards achieving parity with their male counterparts in the tech industry – from leadership positions, to compensation, workplace benefits and for women-led companies, access to funding.

But there are women in tech that are working hard and speaking loudly, paving the way for other women in the tech industry. Be it in their work and in their platforms, these women deserve recognition and their voices need to be heard!

Here is our list of Top 20 female startup voices that you must follow on Twitter:

Alice Bentinck (@Alicebentinck) is a British entrepreneur and co-founder of Entrepreneur First (EF), a London-based company builder and startup accelerator. With offices in both London and Singapore, EF funds individuals across Europe and Asia to create startups. Together with her EF co-founder, Matthew Clifford, Bentinck also founded Code First: Girls, an organization offering free web programming courses for women in university. Bentinck advocates for the entry of more women in the tech field, she was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2016 Birthday Honours for services to business. In 2017, Bentinck was named by Computer Weekly as one of the most influential women in UK IT. She was again named by the London Evening Standard as one of London’s most influential people in the Progress 1000: Capitalisers/ Entrepreneurs category.

What she tweets: Activities of EF and Code First: Girls. She also shares the pieces she writes for Medium on startups and technology and interacts with other tech influencers on Twitter.

Alice Zagury (@Alice_zag) is the co-founder and CEO of The Family, an accelerator based in Paris, Alice Zagury supports women entrepreneurs and local talents in line with the accelerator’s mission to support purpose-driven creators. During the pandemic, Alice Zagury and The Family moved their activities online, dedicating a hotline for aspiring and serial entrepreneurs as an accessible and regular means to reach them.

What she tweets: Alice tweets in both English and French. She shares various activities and programs of The Family (Be My Cofounder, Good Vibes, etc.) as well as her involvement in various programs dedicated to women founders and entrepreneurs.

Alice_StollmeyerAlice Stollmeyer (@StollmeyerEU) is the the founder and Executive Director of Defend Democracy, and a former Digital Advocacy Strategist who has lived and worked in Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels, the heart of the European Union. With a solid background in ‘social studies of science, technology and society’ and in communication, in 2012 Alice founded her own consultancy @StollmeyerEU, specializing in EU public affairs, political communications and digital advocacy. She has been ranked a top digital EU influencer ever since (#1 female digital EU influencer 2019).

What she tweets: Everything about defending democracy and digital advocacy. Her twitter feed is a great resource on discussions and policies concerning disinformation especially in the time of Covid 19 pandemic. She actively shares news, policies and politics affecting the EU and EU interaction with the rest of the world.

Alisée-de-TonnacAlisée de Tonnac (@aliseedt) is the co-founder and CEO of Seedstars World, a global organization aiming to impact emerging and developing markets through its worldwide startup competition and programs. The Seedstars World startup competition covers 90+ countries and the Global Winner will receive a prize of up to $500,000 in equity investment. The Seedstars program is three-fold: academy for idea and prototype startups, accelerator for prototype and revenue stage startups and growth for revenue and scaling startups.

What she tweets: Alisée actively shares busy and diverse activities of Seedstars Worldwide. The activities range from competitions in Africa, to women-centered startup competitions and programs, to promoting Sustainable Development Goals and many others.

Anne-BodenAnne Boden (@AnneBodenis a Welsh tech entrepreneur and founder & CEO of Starling Bank, a UK mobile-only bank. In 2018, she received an MBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) for services to financial technology. Boden founded Startling in 2014, naming it Possible Financial Services, drawing upon her over 30 years of experience in the banking industry. In 2016, it was renamed to Starling Bank and now has over 275,000 customers in the UK.

What she tweets: Anne’s Twitter feed reflects the news, developments, and milestones of Starling Bank. She actively replies to inquiries about Starling’s services and shares her many activities and involvements as a pioneer female fintech entrepreneur.

Carlota Pi Amorós (@CarlotaPiAmoros) is the founder and Executive President of the cleantech scale-up Holaluz. Carlota Pi Amorós grew the company, which was voted as “most valued Spanish energy company”, to its present size of 170+ team members. Holaluz is  the first online electricity distributor in the Spanish market and is set for 1 million clients by 2023.

What she tweets: Aside from tweeting about Holaluz, energy and environmental issues, Carlota champions women entrepreneurs in her tweets.

Celine-LazorthesCeline Lazorthes (@CelineLz) founded the French online money-pot company Leetchi and payments service Mangopay, which were sold to bank Crédit Mutuel Arkéa in 2015 for more than €50 million. Lazorthes  is a serial entrepreneur who has also become an angel investor. She has backed startups like Frichti, Yuka and Le Slip Français.

What she tweets: Celine shares her experiences at Leetchi and how the company has evolved since she has sold it and taken on a less hands-on role as a result. She tweets about women’s rights in general – women’s workplace rights as well as women entrepreneurship. She is also a self-described activist, supporting #ParentalAct, a proposal about extended parental leave signed by dozens of startups.

Cristina_FonsecaCristina Fonseca (@cnfonsecais a Portuguese entrepreneur and angel investor best known as one of the founders of Talkdesk, a cloud-based help desk software that became Portugal’s third “unicorn”. Fonseca was featured in the Forbes 30 Under 30 list under the enterprise technology category in 2016. In 2017 she became an Agenda Contributor to the World Economic Forum. In 2018, Fonseca became a venture partner at Indico Capital Partners, the first Portuguese private venture capital fund investing in Portugal and Spain early-stage, tech-focused startups.

What she tweets: As an engineer with specialization in telecommunications, network engineering and recently, AI, Cristina tweets about her involvement in these fields but more so on topics about AI. She shares insights from her experience with Talkdesk and as a woman VC.

Colette_BallouColette Ballou (@coletteballouis the founder of Ballou PR, a European communications and strategy agency that works with high-growth technology and technology-enabled companies, as well as technology investors. Through Ballou, Collete also invests in high-growth tech startups and VC funds.  

What she tweets: Colette tweets about the latest trends, be it in PR, entertainment trends (read: Kanye West and Queer Eye) or milestones of the VC funds she invests in. She actively shares Ballou’s activities like team achievements and service offerings.

Eileen Burbidge (@eileentso) is a founding partner of Passion Capital, an early-stage venture capital firm that has invested in the likes of Monzo, Go Cardless and Lulu, a private social network for single women. In 2015 she was appointed as the British Treasury’s “special envoy” for fintech and in the same year was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire for services to entrepreneurship. In November 2018, Burbidge was named to the Financial Times’ list of the ‘Top 100 minority ethnic leaders in technology.

What she tweets: Tech news and tech investments. Racism and sexism. She is quite active in replying and commenting on Twitter and giving us a look at her daily life – sharing statistics as a “tech runner” as well as her recent experience of watching Hamilton film on Disney+.

Elizabeth Varley (@evarleyis the founder and CEO of TechHub, the global tech startup community based in the UK and operates TechHubs in seven cities around the world. TechHub has supported over 3000+ entrepreneurs and offers its community workspace facilities, events, workshops, advice sessions, contacts, PR, and press opportunities. 

What she tweets: TechHub’s activities and portfolio companies. Recently she has used her Twitter handle to shed light on racist police actions in the UK and tweeted her support for black-owned UK businesses.

Fleur_PellerinFleur Pellerin (@fleurpellerin) used to be France’s digital affairs junior minister before she founded venture capital firm Korelya Capital. Korelya backs startups, invests in funds and specializes in helping European startups expand into Asia. 

What she tweets: Tweets in English and French about Korelya’s activities such as participation in a funding round and many others. She also shares EU funding news as well as her involvement in the French startup ecosystem.

Francesca_WarnerFrancesca Warner (@checkwarner) “Check” Warner is the co-founder of Ada Ventures, a VC firm investing in overlooked founders and markets. The name is inspired by Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer. She also co-founded Diversity VC in 2017, a nonprofit promoting diversity and inclusion in Venture Capital and Entrepreneurship. Prior to Diversity VC she was a Principal at London seed fund Downing Ventures. Check Warner was featured in the Forbes 30 under 30 Finance List of 2019.

What she tweets: She shares Ada Ventures’ investments and activities via her articles at Medium. She also tweets about Diversity VC’s programs.

Ida-TinIda Tin (@idatin) is the co-founder and CEO of Berlin-based startup Clue, a women’s cycle tracking app that now has over 10 million users in 190 countries. She is credited for coining the term “femtech”, for technology focusing on female/women’s health and well-being.

What she tweets: Women’s health and well-being, women leadership roles, women’s access to healthcare and her involvement in various programs dissecting the issues and topics on these.

Janneke_NiessenJanneke Niessen (@jannekeniessenis the co-founder of CapitalT, an early stage VC that invests in software technology companies. As an investor and serial entrepreneur, she started and sold 2 international tech companies, is co-initiator of InspiringFifty, an initiative that aims to increase diversity in tech by making female role models more visible. Janneke was one of Harper’s Bazaar Women of the Year in 2019.

What she tweets: female founders, funding, future of women-led companies, diversity and her participation in programs and discussions on these topics.

Jennifer_BakerJennifer Baker (@BrusselsGeek) is a European journalist based in Brussels specializing in EU policy and legislation in the technology sector. She has written for ArsTechnica, ComputerWeekly, Macworld and  PC World. She is featured as an EU policy and tech expert on BBC Radio as well as Euronews. She has been consistently named as among the top EU influencers in data privacy and  tech policy.

What she tweets: Her twitter feed is both informative and fun, with a twist of sci-fi geekery! She shares everything EU tech – on topics as disinformation, social media and press freedom, tech policy, digital rights and many more.

Kat-BorlonganKat Borlongan (@katborlongan) is the director of La French Tech, the government organization providing programs to attract startups to La France. Under her leadership, the more open French Tech Visa became available for startup employees, founders, and investors. For startup employees, the visa is unique and counts towards an easier hiring process because employees are not required to have diplomas and do not have to belong to a “metier” (profession) to be hired. It automatically covers immediate family members, meaning spouse and dependent children. Unlike many work visas, companies hiring do not have to show proof that they spent time finding the talent in the country.

What she tweets: French tech’s different programs and how it is geared towards attracting tech talents and investments to France. She also shares about women in tech and diversity.

Roxanne-VarzaRoxanne Varza (@roxannevarzais the Director of Station F, the Paris-based mega-hub for over 1,000 startups that attracted the accelerator residency of such global companies as Facebook, Microsoft, L’Oreal, Ubisoft and BNP Paribas. She co-founded Girls in Tech Paris, Girls in Tech London, and tech.eu.

What she tweets: Everything related to French startups – events and happenings at Station F, fundraising and trends in the French startup ecosystem.

Thea_MesselThea Messel (@TheaMessel) is  at the helm of Unconventional Ventures as a Managing Partner of this Nordic early-stage investment firm investing in underrepresented and women founders. Headquartered in Copenhagen, Unconventional UV PF1, UV’s first investment vehicle since its foundation in 2019 has invested in startups like GRIM, a marketplace for ugly and surplus organic fruits and vegetables and Progress Me, an app that offers support for people affected by eating disorders.

What she tweets: Thea tweets about women and diversity, including how to diversify the deal flow to give access to underrepresented and underestimated founders in the Nordic region.

Virginie_MorgonVirginie Morgon (@virginiemorgon) is the CEO of the private equity firm Eurazeo which invested in French unicorn startups Doctolib and Meero, among many others. Eurazeo is a leading global investment group, with a diversified portfolio of €18,8 billion in assets under management, including €12.5 billion from third parties, invested in more than 430 companies.

What she tweets: Current state of private equity financing in Europe. Virginie is also vocal about sustainability and diversity.

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