Girls certainly ruled during Women 2.0, billed as the world’s largest conference on innovation, entrepreneurship and women, Thursday and Friday at the Bellagio.
Eighteen investors, 28 founders and 16 corporate executives represented a total of $4 billion in investments, and ears were open to good ideas.
Among highlights for attendees was the chance to pitch a board of founders and investors for a chance to win meetings with Shanna Tellerman and Kevin Rose of Google Ventures, the tech giant’s investment arm, and Esther Dyson, an angel investor, who sits on several boards, including Evernote and MeetUp, and has invested in IT companies such as Flickr, Orbitz and others that were later sold to large corporations.
Past winners of Women 2.0 pitch competitions went on to raise $1.2 million in seed funding and, join accelerators such as 500 Startups and Y Combinator.
One venture, Alike, a restaurant-recommending app, was sold to Yahoo.
Ten early stage, high-growth, women-founded business ventures gave five-minute pitches, followed by a five minute Q&A session with judges, including locally based Andy White, a partner in VegasTechFund, as well as judges from Google Ventures, 500 Startups, Cowboy Ventures, SoftTech VC, BBC Worldwide Digital Ventures, XG Ventures, USV and DFJ Gotham Ventures.
Companies that pitched were Abbey Post, which uses 3-D imaging to gather exact sizes of its plus-sized customers and present them with clothes that fit; Admittedly, an online college advisory platform that matches students to their ideal colleges and gives advice to boost chance of admissions; CareBooker, a one-stop online marketplace for family care services such as baby-sitting, tutoring and pet care; DailyDollar, a cloud-based receipt storage solution that links directly with credit cards for easy archival; weeSpring, “consumer reports for the Facebook generation,” which helps parents collect advice on baby products from friends and family; CareLuLu, a preschool and daycare-finding app; CollegeAppz, a “Turbotax for college admissions”; Infinite PDF, which allows for enhanced presentations; Traveling Spoon, which connects travelers to off-the-map food experiences; and Totspot, and online marketplace for buying and selling child items.
Attendees heard from Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, as well as keynotes Megan Smith, vice president of Google[x], Kay Koplovitz, founder of USA Network and the SyFy Channel, Tina Sharkey, CEO of Sherpa Foundry and Jane Poynter, president of Paragon Space Development Corp.
Jacqueline Jensen, co-founder of Las Vegas-based Ticket Cake, served as a mentor at the conference.
“It’s exciting to see women founders, entrepreneurs and thought leaders come together,” Jensen said. “Other female entrepreneurs expressed interest in moving their company to downtown Las Vegas, which speaks to our community’s work cultivating great startup companies and hard-working talent.”