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VC Pitch Deck Bias Is Costing Diverse Startups Funding Dollars

Investors spend 18% more time on pitches coming from all-male teams.

An attendee wearing Bose Corp. headphones works on a laptop computer as he participates in the TechCrunch Disrupt London 2015 Hackathon in London, U.K.

An attendee wearing Bose Corp. headphones works on a laptop computer as he participates in the TechCrunch Disrupt London 2015 Hackathon in London, U.K.

Photographer: Bloomberg/Bloomberg

Apparently 35 seconds is the difference between $195,000 and nearly $660,000.

That’s the finding of a study by DocSend, a Dropbox Inc. subsidiary that allows companies to securely store and share pitch documents. Venture capital firms spent 18% more time viewing pitch decks from all-male teams than those made up of only women, DocSend found. That eventually resulted in men’s firms raising 70% more than women did in 2020 -- an even greater disparity from 2019, when women raised about half as much as men.