Investing in Promising African Female Entrepreneurs

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Guaranty Trust Bank partnered with She Leads Africa (SLA) to support and invest in promising African female entrepreneurs. SLA selected six finalists from more than 400 applications spanning across 30 African countries who all gathered at the 2015 entrepreneur showcase in Oriental Hotel Lagos to pitch their businesses to a panel of judges and an audience of potential investors and customers.

The six finalists are as follows:

  1. Louisa Kinoshi of BeautyRevNG
  2. Ngozi Opara of Heat Free Hair
  3. Imoteda Aladekomo of Heels in the Kitchen
  4. Brenda Katwesigye of Insta Health
  5. Kambili Ofili-Okonkwo of Kamokini
  6. Kasope Ladipo- Ajayi of Omoalata Foods

Kasope Ladipo- Ajayi, Founder of Omoalata Foods (product featured above) was announced as the winner of $10,000 as well as provision of marketing consulting and SME advisory support through MarketHub courtesy of GTBank.

Congratulations to all the female entrepreneurs who applied, to the finalists and special kudos to Kasope Ladipo -Ajayi for taking home the big prize!

Read more:  GTBank and SLA partner to support female African entrepreneurs

Screenshot courtesy:  Omoalata Foods

Women Want the Triple Win: Money, Meaning and Mobility

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According to studies, American women currently are starting twice the number of businesses as their male counterparts.  Author Julia Pimsleur believes there is a significant difference between female- and male-owned businesses and that difference is that most women are in small-business mode — and seemingly stuck there. Only 3 percent of female businesses owners have companies that generate more than $1 million.  She talks about this in her just released book, “Million Dollar Women: The Essential Guide for Female Entrepreneurs Who Want to Go Big.”

Entrepreneurs today want what Pimsleur calls “the Triple Win”: money, meaning and mobility. While money is a traditional measure of success, women today also want to do work that has meaning. Mobility translates into flexibility — freedom to stay home with a sick child and to leave work at the office.

Pimsleur knows the business ownership territory well — she is the CEO and creator of Little Pim, an international company that produces award-winning programs for young children to learn foreign languages. Started as a part-time endeavor from her home, Little Pim now has markets in 22 countries.

Read more:  CEO shares insights for women entrepreneurs

Screenshot courtesy:  Little Pim

Interested In Exporting an Unusual Japanese Fashion?


For those women interested in exporting this unusual Japanese fashion trend to other countries, it’s a set of cat-themed lingerie (as shown) that are flying off the shelves in Japan.

On the surface, the Japanese underwear looks like a regular pair of bra and panties. What gives it a distinctive touch is the subtle texture around the seams, which is designed to resemble cat fur. Currently, the most popular styles are black cat, Tabby, and Siamese. In addition to the fur texture, the most noticeable aspects of the lingerie are the cat tail that ties to the back of the underwear and the included set of cat ears. The tails tie onto the underwear with silk and match the bows decorating the intimate apparel. The Tabby set even comes with its own choker that resembles a collar.

You never know when you have a hot-selling product on your hands.  Felissimo is the company responsible for the underwear line.  The question becomes:  Will the cat-themed lingerie sell outside of Japan?

Read more:  Japan Loves Women In Cat-Themed Lingerie

India Cannot Progress Without the Contributions From Women Entrepreneurs


Kalraj Mishra, the Indian Union Cabinet Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in the BJP-led NDA government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘SWAYAM’, a support cell for women entrepreneurs to seek proposals for starting enterprises by them through the use of social media.

As part of his educational initiatives, Narenda Modi, the newly elected prime minister for India, is expected to go live with three courses through SWAYAM.

The first three courses are:

Modi vowed to increase efforts to eradicate poverty, create employment opportunities for the country’s young workers and provide a safer environment for women.

Read more:  Kalraj Mishra launches support cell ‘SWAYAM’ for women entrepreneurs

Related:  10 Powerful Women Entrepreneurs in India 

Trend for Female Entrepreneurship Is Significantly Up Worldwide

Top Cities for Female Startup Founders

The recent Global Startup Ecosystem (GSE) Ranking report found that “the trend for female entrepreneurs is significantly up,” with the number of new businesses started by women rising by 80 per cent in the past three years.  While startups in the past were sprung forth nearly entirely from places like Silicon Valley and Boston, the span of locations today includes cities from all over the globe — making it excellent news pretty much no matter where you live.

The rise of crowdfunding has seen a “democratisation” in the business world, allowing more and more women to successfully start their own companies.

Expert Market has drawn data based on the GSE Ranking report to rank the top 20 cities in the world for startups founded by women and the percentage averages in each continent.  Chicago (my hometown) just happens to be No. 1!

Read more:  The 20 best cities int he world for female entrepreneurs

Infographic courtesy:

Global Trends in Female Entrepreneurship


While female entrepreneurs’ education level has increased, the innovation of female-owned businesses, measured by whether other businesses offer the same product, has decreased. There is less female involvement in the technology industry this year as well.

The Global Entrepreneurship and Development Institute (GEDI) recently released the 2015 Female Entrepreneurship Index (FEI), which looks at a nation’s favourable conditions for women entrepreneurs worldwide. The FEI analyses 15 factors divided into three categories — Entrepreneurial Environment, Entrepreneurial Eco-System and Entrepreneurial Aspirations — that enhance the prospects for female entrepreneurs in 77 countries, a significant increase from last year’s group of 30.

Is there a difference in the factors that encourage female entrepreneurship as compared to male entrepreneurship?

Research indicates that cultural and societal factors play a greater role in encouraging or dissuading business ownership for women than for men.

Unleashing the power of women entrepreneurs can have a dramatic effect on a country’s economy.

Learn more:  The best countries for female entrepreneurs

Screenshot courtesy:  The

The Role of Women in the Modern 21st Century

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Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University Dean Sally Blount ’92 recently met with White House senior advisers and several leaders from the business and business school communities to discuss the changing needs of the 21st century workplace.  The bottom line is that business schools worldwide must focus on expanding opportunities for women in business and help strengthen the fabric of our great nation.

Former President Jimmy Carter also has a call to action to support women’s rights.

The White House Council on Women and Girls and the Council of Economic Advisers, both of which hosted the event, also released a set of best practices for business schools. These policies offer concrete strategies for business schools to help women succeed throughout school and their careers as well as build a business-school experience that prepares students for the workforce of tomorrow.

Read more … Expanding opportunities for women

How Remarkable Women Entrepreneurs Worldwide Meet Their Dreams


Author Rania Habiby Anderson, who wrote Undeterred: The Six Success Habits of Women in Emerging Economies, spent over four years researching and interviewing more than 250 successful female career women and entrepreneurs in developing countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.

Anderson’s objective with the book is to understand the key traits that caused these women to be successful while so many of their peers failed to meet their dreams.

Below, Anita Newton, VP of corporate marketing at Adknowledge, interviews Anderson on what U.S.-based entrepreneurs can learn from these remarkable women.

Read more:  The No. 1 Trait of Successful Women Entrepreneurs Around the World

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