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Tech tailored for women

  • Liz Salcedo and her invention, a purse that charges a phone on the go.
Liz Salcedo and her invention, a purse that charges a phone on the go. (Andrew A. Nelles / Chicago…)
November 11, 2013|By Leonor Vivanco, @lvivanco | RedEye

Wouldn't it be cool to be able to charge your dying cellphone simply by putting it in your clutch purse?

Liz Salcedo, 28, created Everpurse in River North because she never remembered to charge her phone and didn't like carrying extra batteries. The purse, available in fabric or leather, charges when placed on its charging mat.

In just six days last fall, Everpurse reached the $100,000 goal of its Kickstarter campaign. She ended up raising $238,000 in a month.

Even though the purse is in high demand—2,000 orders were shipped this summer—Salcedo said her company has been dismissed a couple of times by male journalists, leaving her with the impression that her product isn't worth writing about because it's just a product for women.

Other entrepreneurs have said getting investors on board is another obstacle facing startups. It can be particularly challenging when there seems to be a disconnect among men who may not understand a product that targets female consumers.

Salcedo has even gotten some unexpected pushback. "Interestingly, I have had a lot of men say, 'What about me?' " she said. "Most tech products are designed for men. I thought, 'How cool is it that I'm designing a tech product for women?' "

lvivanco@tribune.com

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