Female-Led Fund Firms Account for Less Than 1% of Managed Money in Canada. Warren Buffett is Hoping to Help Change That

By Tim Shufelt | The Globe and Mail | May 27, 2019

When Kim Shannon, founder of Toronto-based Sionna Investment Managers, helped set up a female-led value investing conference in Omaha, Neb., it was a struggle just to get attention and secure sponsors.

Then Warren Buffett showed up.

“Within the first few minutes of the conference starting, he became our keynote speaker,” Ms. Shannon said. “It was a cause that he wanted to lend some support to.”

While the gender gap has narrowed significantly in other professions such as law and medicine, asset management is still utterly dominated by men.

Roughly 90 per cent of U.S. and Canadian fund managers are male, while female-led fund firms account for less than 1 per cent of total assets under management.

Doubling the latter figure is the goal of the Variant Perspectives conference, which is intended to be an annual gathering. The first conference took place two weeks ago against the backdrop of the Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting, which has come to be known as “Woodstock for Capitalists.”

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