The metaverse industry, as well as deep technology and cryptocurrency industries, are struggling when it comes to gender diversity. This is because only 2.3% of women-led startups received funding from venture capital (VC) firms in 2020, and this trend is continuing. Because the metaverse and cryptocurrency industries have a male-dominated workforce and fanbase, encouraging more gender diversity in this space is difficult. Thankfully there are those who are working hard to make a change. One of these individuals is Tamara Obradov, Co-founder and CEO of GameChangers NFT.
This women-led organization is working hard to promote the voices of women in the technology and metaverse sectors to encourage more VC funding. “I have been in venture for seven years now,” explained Obradov. “I come from technology, so I was used to being one of the few women in the room. But what I noticed in venture capital is that we only invest in men. Even if you have a diverse team you still tend to focus on investing in men. There’s just a very strong affinity bias in this sector.” Frustrated by this bias, Obradov created an organization within the Web2 community, called #fundright. This organization was designed to help shed light on this bias and encourage VC firms to invest more broadly. Unfortunately, #fundright was constrained by the COVID-19 pandemic which shrunk the meager 2% of investments in female-led companies to only 1%. Obradov was devastated. “I decided we will never change this establishment,” Obradov said. “I came to the realization that we’re not pushing the square peg through the round hole, and that was a sad moment for me. I realized we needed to do things differently.”
But then she had an idea. “Originally, I thought, let’s set up a fund that will invest in diverse investors.” However, Obradov’s idea didn’t seem to gain much traction. Only once Web3 began to launch, did Obradov feel that the time was right. She then changed her idea to be an organization of diverse founders who help amplify other women’s voices. From there, GameChangers NFT was born.
GameChangers NFT not only offers a community for women entrepreneurs to feel supported, but the organization will also soon be dropping 5,000 NFTs made by 20 women artists focusing on 50 game-changing women and non-binary leaders in their fields. Obradov mentioned that this NFT drop has had some challenges. “We do not spend 24/7 communicating on social media channels, so it has been hard to keep communicating our goals,” she added. “We’re taking a long time to drop our first drop, but that’s because we’re building an intentional community.”
The NFT drop will hopefully be the first step in achieving some of the other goals Obrador has for GameChangers NFT. “What we really want to do is launch this investment club token,” she explained. “This token would be bought by individuals who want to learn more about investing in diverse individuals, and in exchange, these individuals would get co-ownership of a company. Along with this, we want to help people learn how to invest in venture capital or hedge funds. We want the women that have gone through this process successfully to be the ones to bring up the investments and vote within the investment club on who to invest in.” With Obradov and her team working hard to bring change to these industries, their work will hopefully inspire other women to continue to look for funding and be persistent in their efforts, working to slowly change these industries to be more equitable.