WomHub, a Cape Town based female-founder innovation and coworking space, has officially opened its doors to the public. The space aims to provide a supportive community and workspace for women entrepreneurs, freelancers, and professionals.
Located in the heart of Cape Town, WomHub offers a beautifully designed and fully equipped coworking space with various amenities such as high-speed internet, 3D printing, and scanning services, meeting rooms, and offices.
What sets the space apart, according to co-founder Naadiya Moosajee, is that it has been intentionally designed for women by women, so the space includes a lactation lounge, a junior engineering hub where members can have their kids co-play while they co-work and a wellness lounge. The space also offers access to a network of experts, mentors, and investors, who can provide guidance and support to women entrepreneurs.
“ For women who are breastfeeding, we’ve got a wellness area where women can do yoga, meditation and prayer. We’ve also got what we call the junior engineer hub. It’s basically a co-play space for kids that when you are working, your kids can co-play in the space and also learn about STEM and tech,” Moosajee tells TechCabal in an interview.
WomHub was founded by engineers turned entrepreneurs and investors Naadiya Moosajee and Hema Vallabh, who recognised the challenges women face in the business world. They wanted to create a space where women could connect, collaborate, and convert. The founders believe that by providing a supportive and inclusive environment, women can achieve their full potential and make a meaningful impact in their respective fields.
“We are thrilled to open WomHub and provide a space where women can grow their businesses and hopefully make more money,” said Moosajee. “Our mission is to empower women to pursue their passions and achieve success on their own terms.”
According to Moosaje, they plan to build similar facilities in Botswana and Kenya and eventually, more African countries.
More than just a coworking space
“What we have built is not a co-working space but a community. We are female-centric and want entrepreneurs to come into the space to not just work but grow,” said WomHub co-founder Hema Vallabh.
One way they are setting WomHub apart is by facilitating funding opportunities for female entrepreneurs in the community.
“We started a venture capital fund, Five35 ventures, which is a $30 million venture capital fund investing in women in tech businesses across the African continent.”
Through access to funding, WomHub aims to support women all along the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mining & Manufacturing) value chain, from attracting more women and girls through their WomEng programmes to running incubators and accelerators and investing in female entrepreneurs.
“I think this is so important because none of this means anything unless we can move the capital into the hands of women so that they can grow their businesses. And so, this is why my business partner and I have been so focused on raising the venture capital fund so that we can start to not only create the spaces for a woman, literally and figuratively, but give them the capital that they need to thrive.”
According to Partech’s Africa 2022 Venture Capital report, female-founder start-ups raised 22% of all rounds in 2022, up 2% from 2021. Additionally, they accounted for $644 million, or 13%, of the total equity funding, down 3% from 2021.
There is a clear need to bridge the gender gap in terms of funding for tech startups on the continent and initiatives like WomHub, who offer support for women beyond just mentorship but through actually putting capital in their pockets, will play a vital role in bridging the gap over the next few years.