Eighteen months ago, I began conceptualizing the Babson Breakaway Challenge with Susan Duffy, executive director of CWEL at Babson College. This initiative was in direct response to the Diana Project’s Women Entrepreneurs 2014: Bridging the Gender Gap in Venture Capital Report, which quantified the stark shortage in women entrepreneurs receiving venture capital funding. Many months of planning and over 400 applications and two rounds of intense live pitches later, I’m proud to announce the first ever Babson Breakaway Challenge winner, Mighty Well. Last Friday, Emily Levy, founder and CEO of Mighty Well, competed with five other finalists in pitching her business before a panel of judges, and we could not be more excited to award Emily an historic $250,000 investment to help accelerate the growth and impact of her business.
We are indebted to our friends at Babson and the entire Breakaway staff for believing in a project for which there was no blueprint. We owe additional thanks to all of our judges, sponsors, semi-finalists, and finalists as well. Witnessing first hand such an impressive group of women pitch their businesses made the decision more difficult than I could have imagined. At the end of the day, however, Emily Levy and the Mighty Well team sold us on their vision and mission to serve chronic illness patients with medical accessories that bring comfort, confidence, and mobility. Emily’s passion is undeniable, and Breakaway is proud to stand and work with her to #LiveMightyWell.