Ten Female Innovators to Watch In 2018

These inventors, startup founders and businesswomen have exciting things happening this year. Stay tuned!

(Clockwise from top left: Hipcamp; YouTube; Verge Genomics; prernagupta.com; Modern Fertility; May Mobility)

We may not yet have a female president, but women are running the show in all kinds of ways. Now that the number of companies with female founders multiplied by eight between 2009 and 2016, these entrepeneurs need a greater share of the venture capital. (Last year, women-led startups only got a tiny fraction of it—we're talking 2 percent.) Here are 10 innovative women leading the charge, from sustainable energy to women's health.

Jessica Matthews

(Jessica Matthews (YouTube))

Back in 2008, Jessica Matthews, then a junior at Harvard, was asked as part of an engineering course to develop a product for the developing world. Matthews and her team created the Soccket, a soccer ball that uses the kinetic energy from being kicked to charge a battery. The power could then light a lamp for hours, a boon in places where electricity is scarce. After graduation, Matthews and one of her teammates launched a company, Uncharted Play, to commercialize similar products. 

Today, Matthews, a duel U.S.-Nigerian citizen, is founder and CEO of Uncharted Power, a company which looks for kinetic energy solutions to generate clean energy. Projects include a speed bump that stores up the energy generated from being driven over and sidewalk panels that harness energy from people walking on them. The company plans to launch pilot installations of several projects this year.


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