In an effort to drive more funding towards female-led startups, the NSW government has announced plans to seed a $10 million VC fund to support female founders. 

The fund will be named in honour of Carla Zampatti, a pioneering businesswoman and philanthropist who sadly passed away in 2021. 

NSW Treasurer Matt Kean announced the fund as a teaser to the state budget, due to be handed down on June 21. 

“The need to reduce the gender pay gap is well known. What’s less known is the gender investment gap, with women-led startups receiving only about five per cent of venture capital funding in Australia last year,” Matt Kean said.

“This fund will unleash a new wave of female entrepreneurs, providing women with more opportunities to finance their startups and take their businesses to the next level.”

The fund is still a way off being open to funding applications, it’s targeting 2023, but the NSW government is aiming to boost the funding available by bringing private investors onboard. 

The model follows in the footsteps of a similar fund launching in Victoria in early 2021. The $10 million Alice Anderson Fund aims to attract private investors to support women-led businesses. 

The late Carla Zampatti was appointed the Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2009, as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours, recognising her contributions to fashion and business as well as being a role model for women.

“Carla Zampatti was a champion of Australian women and a multicultural success story. This fund will continue her mentoring work by supporting the next generation of female trailblazers,” Matt Kean said.


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