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March 5, 2014 2:25 pm

Start-Up Accelerator for Israelis Receives Google Grant to Boost Female Entrepreneurs

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Israeli entrepreneur Shuly Galili, co-founder of UpWest Labs.

Israeli entrepreneur Shuly Galili, co-founder of UpWest Labs.

UpWest Labs, a Silicon Valley start-up accelerator for Israelis won a grant from Google to increase programming for female  entrepreneurs, Israel’s Globes business daily reported on Wednesday.

The  Google for Entrepreneurs program split a $1 million grant among the 40 start-up communities best positioned to close the gender gap in Silicon Valley.

The funding will allow UpWest Labs to partner with programs in Israel that would encourage more women to apply to its four-month accelerator program in Silicon Valley, establish a network of mentors in Silicon Valley and Israel to increase the visibility of the program among female entrepreneurs, and expand access to a pool of investors seeking to invest in female-led start-ups.

To date, UpWest Labs has accelerated 33 new companies that have gone on to raise a combined $20 million in funding. A fifth of those companies include female founders, four times higher than the average gender ratio.

“Israel leads the world in empowering women to take command,” said UpWest Labs co-founder Shuly Galili, who also helped found the California Israel Chamber of Commerce. “The applicants in this year’s class proved no exception with two female-led companies out of the six companies accepted to our program.”

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