Every year, Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship (ECE) creates a SHE LEADS Dashboard to highlight female founders in the Netherlands. With only 10 percent of companies headquartered in the Netherlands (co-)founded by women, this dashboard is created in order to celebrate those who are challenging the norm.
This year, we are thrilled that ECE has named Nicola Ebmeyer, co-founder and co-CEO of Gain.pro, as a prominent role model in the scale up category of the SHE LEADS Dashboard 2023. Nicola is proud to be among the other influential women on the list, including Eva van Rikxoort (Thirona), Nadja Buckenberger (RoomRaccoon) and Geerke Versteeg (PHI Factory).
The women in this category were chosen for (co-)founding companies that demonstrate at least 10% growth in employees over the period between 2018 - 2021. Since founding Gain.pro, Nicola and co-founder & co-CEO, Frister Haveman, have grown the company from a modest group of 6 to a strong team of 156 over the short span of 5 years. Thanks to their leadership, the company continuously breaks personal records year after year, not only in employee growth but revenue growth as well.
Gain.pro as a company has been recognized for its outstanding achievements as a scale up. Not only was the company nominated as one of the Top 250 Scale Ups in the Netherlands based on extraordinary year-over-year growth, we received an additional recognition as one of the top Young Scalers who have accomplished this kind of growth within 5 years of being founded.
Receiving recognition for both the growth of her company and as an influential female founder is particularly special for Nicola as it is becoming more and more rare for women to found scale ups in the Netherlands. In fact, the proportion of female (co-)founded high-growth companies in the Netherlands has been steadily declining over the past 10 years, according to the ScaleUp Dashboard 2022.
While Nicola is already breaking the norm as a female founder in the Netherlands, she’s even more of an anomaly when considering her position within the fintech industry as a whole. As it stands, women make up less than 30 percent of the fintech industry, and of them, less than 5% are CEOs (Business Today).
To encourage other women to pursue their passions in a male-dominated industries like fintech, she shared her advice in an interview with eWeek on inspiring women in fintech: “Believe in yourself and don’t shy away from telling about your strengths and successes!”
Programs like ECE’s SHE LEADS Dashboard are all about sharing these successes and recognizing female role models in areas where they are currently under-represented. In doing so, we can start to grow the representation of women in the professional landscape, making it a more diverse ecosystem overall.