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Companies Founded by Women That Are Breaking Barriers

By Julia Keller

Last updated: Mar 30, 2023

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From technology to fashion, many companies founded by women are making a name for themselves and inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs. These innovative orgs are not only breaking barriers but also changing the landscape of industries across the board. In this article, we'll take a closer look at 16 companies founded by women making a difference in their respective fields.


Cobble was founded by Jordan Scott in 2019 as an app to make it easier for people to discover, agree on, and do what they want to do together. Cobble functions as a user’s personal assistant, leaving the group decisions to the app. All users have to do is show up.


Whitney Wolfe Herd founded Bumble, a dating app that puts women in control, in 2014. The app requires women to make the first move, giving them more agency and control over their dating lives. Bumble has since expanded to include other networking functions, including Bumble BFF and Bumble Bizz.

The Honest Company

Jessica Alba founded The Honest Company in 2011 to provide safe and eco-friendly baby and household products. Their mission is to make products that are good for people and the planet, without sacrificing performance. The Honest Company is now led by Carla Vernón, who recently joined as the new CEO in January of this year.


Gloria Oppong and her co-founder Derrick Agyiri founded Cleanster in 2019 to help provide a platform for quick and easy cleaning services. Their primary mission is to give everyone convenient and quality access to cleaning services while giving service professionals real work to help them become entrepreneurs with an ethical platform that pays them a living wage.


Emily Weiss founded Glossier in 2014 as a beauty brand that celebrates individuality and inclusivity. The company aims to create products that enhance natural beauty rather than masking it. Glossier's approach has resonated with customers, making it one of the fastest-growing beauty brands in recent years. Today Glossier is run by businesswoman Kyle Leahy.


Heidi Zak founded ThirdLove in 2013 with the goal of creating a better bra-shopping experience for women. ThirdLove's bras are designed using real measurements and feedback from customers, ensuring that every woman can find a comfortable and well-fitting bra.


Byteboard was founded by Nicole Hardson-Hurley and Sargun Kaur in 2018 to help change how engineers get hired. They saw a process of obscure algorithms, and those with access to the content could (and usually would) study it for months. They thought engineers should be judged by their ability to code and do the job on a daily basis, so they started a company to create a different kind of engineering job interview.

Stitch Fix

Katrina Lake founded Stitch Fix in 2011 as a personalized styling service that delivers clothing and accessories to customers based on their style preferences and fit. The company uses data and technology to provide a personalized experience, making it easier for women to shop for clothes without leaving their homes.

Rent the Runway

Rent the Runway was founded by Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Fleiss in 2009 as a way for women to rent designer dresses and accessories at a fraction of the cost of buying them. Today, Rent the Runway has expanded to include everyday clothing and is changing how women think about their wardrobes.


Celine Halioua founded Loyal for dogs in 2019, born out of a commitment to providing pet owners with high-quality, all-natural dog food. The company founders recognized the need for a healthier and more nutritious option for pets and made it their mission to offer personalized meal plans based on each dog's specific needs. The company currently has 54% of women working across different business units.


Scribe was founded by Jennifer Smith in 2019. Scribe is a revolutionary transcription and captioning service that offers accurate and affordable solutions for businesses, content creators, and individuals. Scribe's mission is to make transcription and captioning accessible to everyone, allowing for greater accessibility and inclusivity in media and communication.


Anne Wojcicki founded 23andMe in 2006 as a way for people to learn more about their genetic makeup. The company's DNA test kits allow customers to discover their ancestry, genetic health risks, and even connect with relatives they may not have known existed. The company has grown tremendously – you probably even know someone who has taken their 23andMe test.


Leah Busque founded TaskRabbit in 2008 as a way for people to outsource their errands and chores to others in their community. Today, TaskRabbit is led by Ania Smith, and has expanded to include a wide range of services – making it easier for people to get things done and freeing up time for more important things.


Carolyn Mooney co-founded Nextmv in 2019 to bring the power of decision optimization to more businesses. Together with her team, she recognized the need for more collaborative optimization tooling to streamline the process of building, testing, and operating decision algorithms at speed and scale. Nextmv's innovative platform is designed to solve complex optimization problems – from vehicle routing to workforce scheduling -- allowing businesses to optimize more operations and make better decisions in the time they have.

The Muse

Kathryn Minshew, Alexandra Cavoulacos, and Melissa McCreery founded The Muse in 2011 as a career advice and job search platform. The company offers expert advice and resources to help women navigate their careers and find fulfilling jobs.

Army of Survivors

Army of Survivors was created by a group of 40+ survivors of sexual violence as a non-profit that supports survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. Now led by President & Founder, Grace French, the organization's primary goal is to create a safe and supportive community for survivors while also promoting education and awareness about these issues.


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