Entry to the 2019 competition was an open call to all women leaders who are inventing and building new technologies and interfaces, beauty services, communities and digitally native brands that address the needs of the modern beauty consumer.
Understanding the importance of community for early-stage entrepreneurs, this year L'Oreal USA expanded upon its efforts to support this network, creating an inclusive, virtual Women In Digital community on the Alice platform that will continue to exist year-round as a resource for participating entrepreneurs from all over the United States.
This year we received over 450 nominations, representing a diverse group of women from all over the country. Narrowing this down was a tremendous challenge for our teams and judges, as we saw so many innovative early-stage companies founded by women whom I expect will all have an impact on the future of this industry, said Rachel Weiss, VP of Strategic Growth and Open Innovation at L'Oreal USA. Although the landscape has changed quite a bit in the past seven years, we know there are still challenges for female founders. We are really honored to have the opportunity to help these entrepreneurs kick-start their businesses.
The three winners of the Women in Digital NEXT Generation Award were selected by a panel of expert judges, featuring L'Oreal executives—including Gretchen Saegh-Fleming, CMO of L'Oreal USA, Carol Hamilton, Group President of Acquisitions for L'Oreal USA, and Lisa Price, the founder of Carol's Daughter—and leaders from the beauty and tech industries, including Cheryl Cheng, General Partner, BlueRun Ventures; Elizabeth Gore, President, Alice; Kirsten Green, Founding Partner, Forerunner Ventures; Desiree Gruber, CEO, Full Picture, and co-founder, DGNL; Sarah Kunst, Managing Director, Cleo Capital; Kat Manalac, Partner, Y Combinator; Ann Miura-Ko, Founding Partner, Floodgate; and Nicole Quinn, Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners.