San Francisco - Pinterest revealed its workforce has a bigger percentage of women than Silicon Valley rivals, though females remained a minority at the company.

The online scrapbooking service said women make up 40 percent of its staff and 19 percent of its leadership roles, according to a report posted yesterday by Tracy Chou, a Pinterest software engineer.

Half of the company’s workforce is white and 42 percent are Asian, the report said.

Technology companies including Facebook, Google and LinkedIn have recently issued reports to respond to concerns that Silicon Valley lacks diversity.

Many of the firms disclosed that their employees are around 30 percent female, a number that dropped for women in leadership roles.

The companies also tended to have a greater percentage of white employees, with few blacks and Latinos.

“While we’ve made some progress in diversifying gender at the company, we haven’t done as well in representing different ethnicities, and we’re focused on getting better,” Chou wrote in the post on Pinterest’s website.

“We still have a lot of work ahead of us.”

Unlike the other technology companies that disclosed diversity numbers, Pinterest is privately held.

The company, led by chief executive Ben Silbermann, was valued at $5 billion in a financing in May, making it one of the more richly valued consumer-technology startups.

Pinterest, which has raised a total of $764 million (R8 billion), is backed by investors including Bessemer Venture Partners, Fidelity Investments and FirstMark Capital.

Pinterest’s users are primarily female, the company has said.

The startup began to generate revenue in May when it let advertisers pay to more prominently display their “pins,” or the pictures of products that get shared through the site.

In June, it also opened advertising to all users, letting businesses and individuals promote their posts. - Bloomberg News