The EIC Accelerator Female-led Companies Data & Stats

EIC Accelerator Female-led companies


This article is to celebrate female entrepreneurship. The EIC, through its 2023 work programme, provides all the info on the criteria defining “women-led SMEs” and the mechanism to encourage female participation to apply for the EIC funding schemes. You may find everything you need to know on the official EIC WP 2023. In this article, we will present the data and stats around successful female-led companies in 2022 and the cumulative data which includes the first two years of the programme: ’21 + ’22.



On the EIC Accelerator report we publish every year we classify a female-led company a start-up/scale-up/SME where the CEO is female. Please note this differ from the definition of Women-led SMEs available on page 20 of the 2023 WP.


2022 Results


  • 40 companies out of 227 in 2022 had a female CEO;
  • 17% of the allocated funding went to these companies;
  • The average raised by company is slightly greater than the average allocated in 2022 which was €5,530,672;



  • 75% of companies were selected in the Open Call;
  • 25% of funding was allocated for Challenge Calls;
  • This was in line with the overall trend Open vs. Challenge of 2022;


  • Spain had 44% of its winners [16] led by a female CEO;
  • France and the NL were second and third best respectively on the overall ranking and on the female-led one;
  • Worth noting Norway had 2 out of 5 companies led by a female CEO, while Italy for a second year in a row did not have any;


Cumulative Results [2021 + 2022]


  • 70 companies out of 391 had a female CEO;
  • That is 18% of both selected companies and allocated funding;
  • The average allocated per company is slightly less than the overall average of €5,746,149;



  • 64% of companies were successful under the Open Call;
  • 33% of funding went for challenge-led proposals which is perfectly in line with the overall trend;



  • France is leading the race with 12 companies led by female CEOs;
  • 37% of successful Spanish companies [11/30] are led by female CEOs;
  • Italy, among others, has still no successful company with a female CEO;
  • 18 countries out of the 27 with at least one winner are represented in this ranking;


Our commitment to female founders

At Lira we promote and nurture female entrepreneurship. In 2023 our ambitious goal is to help female-led companies from countries not represented in the ranking succeed securing funding through the EIC Accelerator. Have a great week and enjoy the arrival of spring time!

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