The finalists of the Lady Pitch Night 2014

(Girls in Tech Lady Pitch Night Sept2014) Candidates (1)BW

I know usually, Frenchy, it is not about the products but the people and more especially about their path and personality but that is usually…

Usually, it is also 1 entrepreneur = 1 portrait = 1 post but… But the Lady Pitch Night 2014…

The event, organised by Girls In Tech Paris, was that smashing, gathering that top class speakers in such a The Family mood – Neelie Kroes (European Commission), Sheryl Sandberg (Facebook), Joanna Shields (Digital Advisor to the UK Prime Minister), Mike Butcher (TechCrunch), Reshma Sohoni (Seedcamp), Brenda O’Connell (Twitter), Eliane Fiolet (Ubergizmo) and Pascal Latouche (Orange) – that I have been very happy to make one exception !

But the happiest ones would probably be you guys… discovering more about these 3 finalists out of 178 applicants from across Europe, 3 ladies, 3 entrepreneurs and 3 unique sensibilities…

This would not have been possible without the extraordinary commitment of the whole team of Girls In Tech Paris… A BIG THANK YOU & CONGRATS to Roxanne, Mounia, Adriana, Audrey, Samantha, Lucie, Marion, Sarah, Julie, Céline, Pauline, Nicolas, Juliette, Mathieu, Sonia, Edwina.

(Girls in Tech Lady Pitch Night Sept2014) Girls in Tech team selfie (7)


Gulnaz Khusainova – Founder of EasySize – The Lady Pitch Night 2014 Winner

(Girls in Tech Lady Pitch Night Sept2014) Gunaz Khuzeinova (Easysize) (7)

@fredhermelin : [quote]Hi Gulnaz ! Welcome on Frenchy…Would you please pitch EasySize for us ?

Gulnaz :

« EasySize as an idea of solving the size issue was born 3 years ago. However, the EasySize as a current product was created only last September. Initially EasySize was a mobile app, where everyone could define body parameters and sizes in popular brands using 2 photos. During almost a year me and my team were working on improving the technology, and in September 2013 EasySize has been selected to the Startupbootcamp acceleration program in Copenhagen. Only in Copenhagen we had a chance to test the idea with shops and made a pivot.

I was sure that the right fitting service should be extremely easy to use for clients and online-shops, but also accurate enough to predict a correct size. Our dream solution only has to ask clients about something that everyone knows or can easily check — the size of any piece of clothing they own. »

« The solution is built on a technology using various factors to analyse online-shops orders records. It means that the size is calculated not based on what clients think they look like or prefer to think they look like, but what they actually buy, return and do not return. What also differs EasySize from competitors, that EasySize doesn’t compare your body parameters with static size charts, but predicts the size based on your shopping behavior. »

« For online shops the integration with our service doesn’t usually take more than 1 hour. They can do it with the API or by installing one of the plug-in solutions for popular e-commerce platforms. No size charts or clothes measurements are required.

As a B2B product we charge online shops. First 4 weeks an online shop can use EasySize for free and try it out. After one of the monthly subscription prices has to be chosen – it’s based on a number of orders made with EasySize:

0-50 orders – Free
50-200 orders – 99 EUR
200-1000 orders – 399 EUR
1000-5000 orders – 899 EUR

Currently we’re testing a first e-commerce platform (Prestashop) to understand how our marketing and sales strategy can be scaled on other platforms. It will allow us to officially launch EasySize on 3-4 e-commerce platforms next year.

We’re also now working on localization – so next few weeks our solution will work in Turkish, French and next year few other languages. In our plans go to Latin American and Asia Pacific markets next year. »

@fredhermelin : What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done ?

Gulnaz : 

« That’s a hard question! I think I’ve never been a spontaneous person and always tried to plan everything ahead. But I can admit that some of more actions might look as crazy ones. For example, I’ve been told that I’m crazy to leave my live and my well-paid job in a bank in Moscow and move to Copenhagen to run my business. Or me being crazy for starting a company and not having a stable job in general.

I grew up in a traditional family in Moscow with my mom working on government and my dad being a professor. My parents always wished for me to have a proper job, which means do what they do or work in financial companies. So it was hard for them to understand my passion about start-up, something that is opposite to what they accept as a proper job. »

« But as for me it’s no that much about being crazy, but about following your dreams. If you do it, then it’s all about you being more passionate rather crazy. »

@fredhermelin : If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor ?

Gulnaz : 

« I think that the right mentor has to have an experience in your startup’s field, inspire you personally and be a “decent human being”. The last one is the hardest one to define without meeting someone in person. But for me it’s important to know that my mentor is a good person (even though it sounds like a cliché), someone whom I can trust. »

« So I would perhaps choose Sophia Amoruso, CEO & Founder of Nasty Gal. »

« She started her company in 2006 by selling vintage clothes at Ebay, last year Nasty Gal’s revenue was equal to $100 mln. and first “offline” stores will be opened in USA soon. Sophia is not just a success story in fashion e-commerce, but also an inspiring personality. She recently finished her book called “#GIRLBOSS” where you can see her transformation from a confused young girl to a bad-ass CEO. So she definitely fits first two requirements and I hope one day I will have a chance to meet her in person and confirm the last one. »

@fredhermelin : What’s the first thing you’d do if you were invisible for one day ?

Gulnaz : 

« Hard to say. I would probably make a sneaky user[/typography] test to see how users actually use EasySize. »

@fredhermelin : If you could learn to do anything, what would it be ?

Gulnaz : 

« I might be not novel, but I would choose an ability to learn foreign languages or be able to code.

I like that Europe is so diverse and every time when I visit a new country I enjoy being “integrated” to a society, feel a country and be a local (for at least some time). And of course, it could be much easier if I knew other languages, not only English. I imaging that it few years, perhaps, we would be able to “plug-in” a magic flash card[/typography] with all these different languages which you could learn and get in seconds. And of course, as a non-tech founder of the startup. I’ve been coding (simple languages and a bit of SQL scripts) and analyzing data bases for a while, but never been able to actually build a product. »

« I’m a passionate about what I do, and imagine how wonderful it would be to actually also participate in coding the product. »

@fredhermelin : If you could witness any event past, present or future, what would it be ?

Gulnaz : 

« Probably a moment of some inventions. I was always curios about what happens in people’s brain when they invent something outstanding. Imagine, if you could be with Nikola Tesla when he invented X-rays or Albert Einstein and the Theory of relativity. What had they thought about? What had been happening in their heads? What emotions had they had? »

Áine Behan – Co-founder of Cortechs – The most Innovative Pitch Winner

(Girls in Tech Lady Pitch Night Sept2014) Aine Behan (Cortechs) (2)BW

@fredhermelin : Hi Áine ! Welcome on Frenchy… Would you please pitch Cortechs for us ?

Áine : 

« I don’t want the kids I care about taking pills when they don’t need to. »

« I have over a decads experience of working in neuroscience and I know how vulnerable a childs brain is when its is developing. I also know that there are often things other than medication that work.

7% of children worldwide have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). These children have huge behavioural problems with attention and with long term adverse outcomes including a lower occupational status, substance abuse, lesser academic achievements, more driving accidents and a higher incidence in marital breakdown and divorce. SharpBrain reports this to cost in excess of 100 billion USD annually.

The current solution to treat ADHD is to prescribe medication commonly known as Ritalin. It acts as a stimulant and has unfavourable and unknown side effects for the developing brain so parents are looking for an alternative to this pill-popping culture.

At Cortechs, we suggest a different approach to this problem.

Neurofeedback, a technique using brainwaves to regulate brain patterns, can rival such medication to improve the debilitating symptoms of attention and relaxation in ADHD.

Moreover, focusing the brain using games is a fun way proven to engage kids[/typography]. At Cortechs, we use brainwaves, sensors and science to create engaging games that make children become more focused and relaxed.

With our first batch of software built, platforms underway and demo games developed with brainwave headsets already validated against medical equivalents, Cortechs is positioned to capture a slice of the addressable ADHD market worth €317 million. We launch our first game this December 2014 testing our mixed revenue model based on gaming subscriptions and headsets bundles in the ADHD market.

Cortechs are one of 8 startups currently participating in the Bank Of Ireland Accelerator Programme run by Bill Liao and Sean O’Sullivan. We were awarded the BBC Grand Challenge prize for our connected technology proposals to improve experiences for children with neurotypical conditions. I was Dublin Business Chambers female entrepreneur of the Year for 2013.

Cortechs are currently using the accelerator as a springboard to prove traction in the market, secure revenue and position ourselves globally as an investable high potential start up. »

@fredhermelin : What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done ?

Áines :

« Well there are a few crazy stories that may not make it for exposure in this blog… He he he…

Toughest test on my body was climbing Kilimanjaro – might be described as crazy!

I am not the greatest with changes in pressure and swell up like a balloon so the altitude sickness I experienced was a physical effect but it was a huge mental test on whether I could keep going or not… At the time I was doggedly stubborn and cried but just got on with it… »

« Afterwards you realise that you feel absolutely crazy with what you have put your body through yet super delighted with the personal achievement you feel. »

@fredhermelin : If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor ?

Áines :

« I wouldn’t mind meeting Richard Branson – I rather like his attitude and approach to life and business and think he would be a fun go-getter to have a conversation with… David Attenborough too as I admire everything he has seen and how he has opened up nature and its diverse beauty to the world… I like to meet people in life that can make me laugh – that says a lot about a person and I hold it in high regard… »

@fredhermelin : What’s the first thing you’d do if you were invisible for one day ?

Áines :

« I would probably use it frighten the living daylights out of my family and friends (or anyone I could) and truly freak them out – there is nothing that makes me laugh more than seeing someone scared to distraction… He he he… »

@fredhermelin : If you could learn to do anything, what would it be ?

Áines :

« There’s a bit of an adrenaline junkie sneaking through but its great intentions and when I have time to do these things – all about thinking big ! I’m going to do a sky-dive soon as I have been threatening to do one for ages and I would love to do it. I would love to be a fearless swimmer too – one of my vices that needs confronting… »

@fredhermelin : If you could witness any event past, present or future, what would it be ?

Áines :

« Maybe my parents getting married. »

« I love Nature and got to see the Northern Lights last year in Iceland so the idea of witnessing similar wonders of nature like that would be pretty legend. In the future I would love to see whales at sea or gorillas and I have a few hikes in mind that I would like to do –

I went to the Galapagos 2 years ago and that was pretty legend. »

Pauline Laigneau – Co-founder of Gemmyo – The Pulic Vote Winner

(Girls in Tech Lady Pitch Night Sept2014) Pauline Laigneau (Gemmyo) (1)BW

@fredhermelin : Hi Pauline ! Welcome back on Frenchy…Would you please pitch Gemmyo for us ?

Pauline :

« Gemmyo is a little like the “Uber” of jewelry: a new, modern, young jewelry brand. »

« The jewelry industry has not evolved in hundreds of years: jewelry is extraordinarily expensive, the experience is often intimidating and unfriendly, and choice is very limited due to the enormous cost of inventory. »

« Gemmyo is changing the rules of the jewelry industry for customers through 3 drivers »

« Customization : every piece of Gemmyo jewelry is customizable with 15 different gemstones and 5 precious metals. The pieces are crafted on-demand within 2 to 3 weeks. This innovation allows customers to co-create their piece of jewelry in a simple and hassle-free way.

Price : Gemmyo is the first pure-player jewelry brand. With no inventory, no intermediaries, Gemmyo offers its customers an extraordinary quality of jewelry, made in France, at the best possible price.

Service : Buying jewelry is rarely an enjoyable moment. Gemmyo offers la Zappos-like experience though which customers are pampered by expert and friendly customer care. Gemmyo also offers ecommerce guarantees: free-shipping, free return and free ring resizing. »

« We believe a new generation of consumers are waiting for a new kind of luxury: more modern and true. A luxury where you can be yourself, buy what you like and have fun doing it. »

@fredhermelin : What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done ?

Pauline :

« I married my cofounder 😉 »

@fredhermelin : If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor ?

Pauline :

« Shery Sandberg, an exceptional business woman, that doesn’t need to act like a man to be successful… »

@fredhermelin : What’s the first thing you’d do if you were invisible for one day ?

Pauline :

« I would go and spend an evening in the parts of the Louvre that are closed to visitors. With a nice bottle of champagne, good food, and masterpieces just for me ! »

@fredhermelin : If you could learn to do anything, what would it be ?

Pauline :

« Be a great kite surfer! Such a great sport! I love it but never find time to practice… »

@fredhermelin : If you could witness any event past, present or future, what would it be ?

Pauline :

« The call of De Gaulle to resist Nazi invasion in France. True leadership. »

1000 thanks to you Gulnaz, Áine and Pauline ! And after the pitches here is a selection of the « pics of the night » by Olivier…

Les photos d'Olivier Ezratty



About Girls in Tech :

Girls in Tech is an international organization that supports women in technology and entrepreneurship. The network was founded in 2007 by Adriana Gascoigne in San Francisco. The French chapter was launched in 2010 by Mounia Rhka and Roxanne Varza. Girls in Tech has additional European chapters in the UK, Romania, Italy, Luxemburg and the Netherlands.

More about :

The Lady Pitch Night 2014





Crédit photos : Olivier Ezratty/Opinions Libres


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