The founder of Skip Capital, Kim Jackson has been awarded the prestigious Veuve Clicquot Business Woman of the Year Award for 2019 in front of 120 Australian businesswomen.
Ms Jackson, who last year headlined the VIP launch of Future Women alongside former Foreign Minister Julie Bishop was awarded the coveted prize for her support of “phenomenal female entrepreneurs”. In 2018, Skip Capital invested over $40 million in eleven start-ups, including six companies founded and led by women.
She was presented the prize by Hollywood actress, producer and activist, Kate Bosworth, who flew from Los Angeles especially for the event, at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art in the Rocks.
Raised in the central Queensland town of Yeppoon, Kim graduated as dux of her school and studied systems engineering at ANU. Armed with a double degree in Commerce and Engineering, she began her career as an investment banker at Citigroup. She then spent more than a decade at Hastings Funds Management before founding Skip Capital.
The Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award is part of a global initiative celebrating the success and vision of entrepreneurial business women. The award was created in 1972 to coincide with the bicentenary of the Clicquot Maison, and has recognized bold female entrepreneurs and their professional successes with every successive year.
“I’m particularly proud that around half of our startup investments are in female-led companies, compared to a shocking industry average of just two percent.”
Kim Jackson was chosen by a panel of judges as the female entrepreneur who best reflects Madame Clicquot’s qualities of innovation, audacity and fearlessness.
She won ahead of finalists which included Kate Morris, CEO and Founder of Adore Beauty, Dr Catriona Wallace, CEO & Founder of Flamingo AI, Emma Welsh, Co-Founder of Emma & Tom’s and Grace Wong, CMO & Co-Founder of Liven.
On winning the prize Kim said: “When I started Skip Capital I had one goal: to invest in great founders with big ideas. To date, we have invested in 14 incredible startups, from tackling skin cancer detection to gender equality recruitment. I consider myself fortunate to be surrounded by such an inspiring pool of entrepreneurs. I’m particularly proud that around half of our startup investments are in female-led companies, compared to a shocking industry average of just two percent. The industry statistic is not good enough given the number of great ideas and female talent I’m seeing.”
“I’m proud to be recognised alongside so many talented business women and am committed to continuing to support big ideas and growing Australian innovation.”
Kate Bosworth was chosen as the keynote speaker after being named in People magazine’s list of 25 Women Changing the World. She and her husband, filmmaker Michael Polish also financed Nona, the story of a girl from Honduras who meets a charming boy who promises her safety in America, only to be led into the world of sex trafficking.
She told the audience: “Madame Clicquot wrote thousands of letters, and she still speaks to us today. ‘The world is in perpetual motion, and we must invent the things of tomorrow. Act with audacity.’
The Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award pays homage to Madame Clicquot, one of the first modern business women, who audaciously led Maison Clicquot to success. Since the Award’s inception, the worthy female heirs of “la grande dame de la Champagne” have been recognized for their own unique and pioneering qualities.
As the winner of the Australian chapter, Ms Jackson receives a trophy, a bottle of Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2008, and a trip to France, where she will visit the Veuve Clicquot Maison, the Manoir de Verzy and the House’s vineyards in Reims. During her visit, the winner will have a vine baptised in her name, recognising her legacy and lifelong relationship with Veuve Clicquot.
The winner was chosen by a panel comprising: Sarah-Jane Clarke AM, Co-Founder and former Director of sass&bide; Mandy Foley, Founder and Managing Director of Stedmans Hospitality; Elizabeth Ann Macgregor OBE, Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia; Louise Olsen, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Dinosaur Designs and Naomi Simson, Founder of RedBalloon.
In 2018, Skip Capital invested over $40 million in eleven start-ups, including six companies founded and led by women:
- Design platform, Canva (founded by Melanie Perkins)
- Energy finance start-up, Brighte (Katherine McConnell)
- Gender equality recruitment start-up, WORK180 (Gemma Lloyd and Valeria Ignatieva)
- Unconscious bias recruitment tool, Applied (Kate Glazebrook)
- Skin cancer detection start-up, MetaOptima (Maryam Sadeghi)
- Maker/craft marketplace, Making Things (Megan Elizabeth)
Skip Capital has also invested in some of Australia’s greatest start-up success stories, including SafetyCulture and CultureAmp.
Kim is a mentor of the Startmate accelerator program, advising new start-ups at every stage of their company journey, and is a mother of three. She has this year set up a Women in Engineering scholarship at ANU focusing on encouraging women from rural and regional Australia to pursue engineering studies.
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