Celebrating Women’s History Month with Amazon Alexa Startups and The Alexa Fund: Get to Know Five Finalists from the “Women Founders Represent” Pitch Competition
March 31, 2021 | Cecilia Austin | afrotech.com
From corporate boardrooms to launching new businesses, in addition to being the most educated group in America, women are making history 52 weeks, 365 days a year. So each March, the least we can do is highlight those doing it their way during Women’s History Month.
With women facing additional hurdles in the venture capital world, Amazon Alexa Startups and the Alexa Fund, which provides up to $200 million in venture capital funding to fuel AI and voice technology innovation, kicked off dedicated efforts to address such inequalities through capital and non-capital support for women entrepreneurs.
In this spirit, in 2020, Alexa Startups and the Alexa Fund collaborated with All Raise – a nonprofit organization that works to empower women entrepreneurs and venture capital investors – to create an innovative pitch competition called Women Founders Represent (WFR).
In celebration of Women’s History Month, meet five women who made their voices heard at WFR, and learn how they’re boldly pushing doors open in the business and the venture capital world.
Mouna Elkhatib, Co-Founder, CEO & CTO
Mouna Elkhatib is the CEO, CTO, and Co-Founder of AONDevices, Inc., a fabless semiconductor company specializing in application-specific edge AI processors with high accuracy at ultra-low power. The first release of the AONVoice™ Edge AI processor, unleashes the power of smartphones, and other battery-powered consumer devices to address the growing demand for a more convenient, and safer always-on touchless user interface.
Elkhatib, has over 19 years of experience in the semiconductor business, with a successful track record in engineering, engineering management, and cross-functional team leadership. Prior to AONDevices, she was the system lead and principal chip architect at Qualcomm. Before that, she was the Director of VLSI at Conexant, leading audio System-on-Chip (SOC) architecture and design. She is one of the key developers of Conexant’s PC-HD audio codecs, USB audio codecs/DSP, and Voice input processor SOCs for smart speakers.
Elkhatib also serves on the Global Semiconductor Alliance Women’s Leadership Council and runs the WLI Entrepreneurial Committee. Elkhatib holds an engineering degree from Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Electricité et de Mécanique (ENSEM), eleven US patents and eleven pending patents.