It’s a well-documented fact that female founders receive less venture capital funding than their male counterparts. What is perhaps more surprising is that things haven’t improved—and have actually worsened—over the past year.
Venture capitalists invested $58.2 billion in companies with all-male founders in 2016. Meanwhile, women received just $1.46 billion in VC money last year, according to data from M&A, private equity, and venture capital database PitchBook. That massive disparity is due both to the differences in the number of deals and the average deal size by gender.
First, consider the volume of deals. In 2016, 5,839 male-founded companies got VC funding, compared to just 359 female-founded companies. In other words, companies run by men got more than 16 times more funding than companies run by women. (Companies with both male and female founders fared slightly better than those founded exclusively by women with 1,067 receiving funding.)
There was some positive news last year: Women-led companies made up 4.94% of all VC deals in 2016—the highest percentage in the past decade. It’s a paltry number, but a noticeable improvement from 10 years ago, when female founders were involved in just 2.95% of deals.