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Knomo Trailblazers: Lu Li, founder @Blooming Founders

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What do you think the split between male and female VCs is? The result? A meagre 8% female, the statistics for women in tech - across the spectrum of industries - is still shockingly low.

Enterprising CEO and Founder Lu Li is a front-runner and role model for the next generation of entrepreneurial women. Just 3 years ago, Lu Li left her monotonous corporate job at 28 to create her own future and her own business. Soon after launching into entrepreneurship, she realised she needed a support system for startup female entrepreneurs. In fact, 75% of female entrepreneurs are solo founders finding it hard to scale and build connections. Lu determined that the growing trend in female entrepreneurship would only increase the need for a support system for women pursuing startup careers in London. After discovering this trend, Lu decided she had found her new business and passion, leading to the creation of her company Blooming Founders.

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In 2015, Lu started the Blooming Founders community, a business social network for early stage female entrepreneurs. The organisation’s mission is to create a supportive community with opportunities that give female founders a leg up for their business- like connecting them with tech talent, corporates, interns, industry experts or investors (source: organisation's website). This constructive group is the first of its kind, and is free for entrepreneurs to collaborate and develop startup ideas with one another. Receiving advice, feedback and encouragement from fellow businesswomen is vital to the success of a startup and is what makes Blooming Founders crucial for entrepreneurs.

Blooming Founders offers events such as panel discussions and interviews for its members to learn from experienced female entrepreneurs and industry experts. The community also hosts networking socials for enterprising women to collaborate and validate business ideas. These events and opportunities accelerate startup journeys for female founders by connecting ambitious members with each other. Joining the organisation builds members’ professional networks and creates a safe environment to share and ask startup questions.

A previous obstacle in the growth of female startup companies was the lack of entrepreneurial role models who were women. Lu’s new book, “Dear Female Founder”, highlights trailblazer women who have achieved great success. Launched July 2016, the book provides guidance from 66 exceptional female entrepreneurs. The writers share letters of advice for the next generation of female entrepreneurs. These successful women offer insights they wished someone had told them when they started out. “Dear Female Founder” is another example of Lu creating a nurturing environment for female entrepreneurs that did not exist when she started Blooming Founders.

Want to get your hands on Lu's bag? Check out the Grosvenor Square tote HERE

Franco Boydell

Marketing Manager for Knomo. Full time Digital Knomad. Find me on Twitter @FrancoBoydell
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