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The BoF Podcast: Fetchr Co-Founder Joy Ajlouny on Being a Woman in Tech

In a deeply personal presentation at BoF VOICES, the entrepreneur behind two successful Silicon Valley ventures shares her lessons from the “double bind” of navigating her industry as a woman.
Joy Ajlouny | Source: Getty Images for The Business of Fashion

OXFORDSHIRE, United Kingdom — “When you change your thoughts, you change your reality.” As the co-founder of e-commerce platform Fetchr, which uses GPS to circumvent the Middle East’s no-address problem, Joy Ajlouny is living proof of this mind over matter philosophy.

Born to traditional middle-class Palestinian refugee parents, Ajlouny was raised to aspire to a life of security, namely through marriage and children. However, in the midst of an "amazing amount of depression" due to her broken engagement to a "Silicon Valley giant," she learned to turn around her negative thoughts and stop second-guessing herself.

In a world where only 2.7 percent of Silicon Valley funding goes to women founders with at least a Series A round under their belts, Ajlouny's success in starting two e-commerce businesses — the first, Bonfaire, acquired by Moda Operandi — is no mean feat.

"Being a woman in tech is the hardest thing I've ever done," she says, but her unapologetic "bull-in-a-china-closet spirit" means she won't take no for an answer.

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The State of Fashion: Technology
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The State of Fashion: Technology