10 Women-Owned Businesses You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

By on March 20, 2013

10 Women-Owned Businesses You Probably Never Heard Of

The days of purely men-owned businesses left years ago. Successful female entrepreneurs are flooding in at a rapid speed. Let’s take a look at these 10 women-owned businesses that are blowing their competition out of the water.

1) Annabelle Candy Company

Annabelle Candy Co. was founded by Susan Karl’s grandfather in the 1950’s. After her grandfather’s death in 1971, her mother Annabelle Block (whom the company was named after), stepped up the plate and took over the business. Since 1995 Karl has been running the business herself.

2) Astia

Astia, created by a woman for fellow women entrepreneurs, is a non-profit group based in San Franciso. Sharon Vosmek created Astia to help women on their entrepreneurial journey by assisting them with funding.

3) Birchbox

Birchbox is a monthly subscription service that sends their members a box containing cosmetic samples. Hayley Barna and Katia Beauchamp, Harvard Business graduates, began this company in 2010. After extreme success they developed a men’s Birchbox in April of 2012.

4) Rent the Runway

Similarly to BirchBox, Rent the Runway was created by two Harvard students, Jennifer Hymen and Jennifer Fleiss. After dealing with their own dilemma of having “a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear” on special occasions, they came up with the idea of a rental program for designer clothes and shoes.

5) Hummer Winblad Venture Partners

Hummer Winblad Venture Partners is a company that searches for six promising startups perennially and invests $200 million in each. This company was created by Ann Winblad, a software venture capitalist.

6) ActioNet Inc.

ActioNet’s company slogan is “Turning Vision into Action”. They are an IT solutions company that aims to help clients in their business endeavors. Ashley Chen founded the company 15 years ago. They are quickly growing and are in the top 5 grossing women-owned businesses.

7) Falconwood Inc.

Falconwood Inc. is a small business that caters to executive level consultants and supports Department of Defense IT programs. Since the creation of this business in 2001, they have quickly become a go-to source. They are an excellent example of a small woman-owned business that gives larger companies a run for their money.

8) Spanx

Men and women alike have probably heard of the famous body-shaping hosiery called Spanx. Sara Blakely, the creator, began this business with only $5,000 in savings. Needless to say, thanks to excellent marketing and business know-how, the Spanx product line went crazy.

9) Lark

After experiencing sleep issues and weight-gain herself, CEO Julia Hu created Lark. Lark is an electronics company that offers products to help consumers monitor their health more easily through mobile gadgets.

10) Samasource

This non-profit organization, founded by Leila Chirayath Janah, strives to give work to women and youth rather than just handouts. Samasource works with small companies and big one alike, including Microsoft and Google. Their goal is to help those in poverty gain confidence and learn business (and life) skills while earning an income.

Let us now in the comments below about your favorite women-owned businesses.

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Matthew Toren

About Matthew Toren

Matthew Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Adam, of Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley). He's based in Vancouver, B.C.