WEConnect International in India identifies, educates, registers, and certifies women's business enterprises that are at least 51% owned, managed, and controlled by one or more women. WEConnect International is the only non-profit connecting women-owned businesses with multi-national corporate purchasing organizations outside of the United States.
News and Events
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IDRC Awards Grant to WEConnect International to Empower Women Entrepreneurs in India
For Immediate Release
(March 3, 2015 – Washington) Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) today announced a CA$560,000 grant to WEConnect International in support of its new project, “Growing Women-Owned Businesses in India by Building on Private Sector Initiatives.” The project will leverage the significant investments made by WEConnect International corporate members to develop a searchable database of women-owned businesses in India and in more than 80 other countries.
“We are very grateful for IDRC’s leadership and support,” said Elizabeth A. Vazquez, CEO and Co-Founder of WEConnect International. “In our short five-year history, WEConnect International has played a key role in women’s economic empowerment on the ground in nearly 20 major markets. This grant will help build the ecosystem women-owned businesses require for sustainable and inclusive growth.”
EXCLUSIVE WORKSHOP: How to the Leverage the WEConnect Network
All WEConnect International Certified and Self-Registered Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) in India are invited to a workshop on “How to leverage the WEConnect International Network.”
We will start with a briefing by Executive Director of WEConnect International in India Sucharita Eashwar on the WEConnect eNetwork and the opportunities it offers - both locally and globally. Then, certified entrepreneurs will share how they concretely use WEConnect International to find partners, customers, distributors, investors, develop their own business skills – and not to forget, make friends!
You will hear the inside stories and learn from the experience of certified business owners including:
• Anshul Verma, CEO, TE Infotech
• Kamala Raghunath, Founder, Giftlinks
• Poornima Janakiram, Founder, Aries Arts
• and other successful business owners.
Learn how their certification has helped them grow, gain visibility and open doors, resulting in quantum growth for their businesses and them personally.
NOTE: This workshop is only for WEConnect International Certified and Self-Registered WBEs.
Date: Friday, 13 March 2015
Time: 3pm to 6pm (includes tea, snacks and networking)
Venue: Boardroom, WEConnect India Office, 3rd Floor, Ginserv Building (Behind Hotel Leela Palace), Kodihalli, Bangalore
• Free for WEConnect International Certified Businesses (and those in process)
• Rs. 250 for WEConnect Self Registered Businesses.
Deadline for Registration: 10 March
Click HERE to register
Have questions? Please call Sunitha Prasad at 99724 70000.
Job Opening: Program Associate, WEConnect International in India
Location: Bangalore, India
Job Description: The WEConnect International India Program Associate will work closely with the MD and India Head of Women’s Enterprise Development and provide effective support to advance WEConnect International’s mission and agenda in India. Entrepreneurial initiative, customer orientation, communication skills and attention to detail would be key aspects of the successful candidate.
The due date for applications is 28 February 2015.
"When Woman Entrepreneurs Had Their Day -- And Their Say!"
An Exerpt from the December 2014 issue of SME Times India:
"It was the big boost for the increasing number of woman entrepreneurs of the State. The Women Entrepreneurs Day recently celebreated with flourish under the auspices of the Karnataka Government itself.
It was decided that a core group should meet once in two months to work on the strategies for a road map for women entrepreneurs and its implementation.
The number of participants itself spoke of the positive response by women entrepreneurs. As many as 300 of them from various areas of industry participated in the event which marked international woman's entrepreneurship day...
The UN itiative to recognize and foster growth among women has been followed up by Karnataka with measures like sensitization of banks, skill development, industrial parks with creche faciities, transport..."
"No Country for Women Entrepreneurs"
From the Times of India, December 21, 2014
"WEConnect International, which set up its India operations in 2012, connects women-centric enterprises it certifies to multinational corporate members like IBM or Accenture. Sucharita Shome Eashwar, India head, explains, 'To be eligible for certification, women must hold a majority stake in the enterprise (51% or more) and be decision-makers in the enterprise (hold post of CEO or MD). We also prefer enterprises that have completed at least one year of operation.'
'In 2013, IBM spent over Rs 300 crore with diverse suppliers across India, of which more than Rs 100 crore was spent with women-owned suppliers. We expect year-to- year growth,' says Suhaib Sajid, who leads IBM’s sup-plier diversity program in Asia-Pacific. Srikant Rao, MD-Procurement Asia-Pacific at Accenture, believes having a diverse supplier chain which includes women entrepreneurs is also a good commercial decision."
New Report: Governance Observer – The changing face of corporate boardrooms | Volume 2
In this year’s edition of the Governance Observer, Grant Thorton India LLP takes a closer look at the structure of corporate boards of India’s top 150 companies by market capitalization. The study provides several key insights, which would be useful to companies in structuring and managing their boards. The report will also enable regulators identify the extent to which India Inc is complying with the corporate governance norms in line with the Companies Act, 2013 and the Revised Clause 49 of the Listing Agreement.
WEConnect International in India Invited Women in Business to Think Big at Annual Forum
WEConnect International in India held its second Think Big Women in Business Forum on September 11-12, 2014, at the Ritz Carlton Bangalore. The event provided women business owners with an opportunity to develop their professional skills, expand their networks, and meet potential buyers, investors, and industry mentors. A total of 450 delegates attended the event with participants coming from 12 cities across India – Bangalore, Bidar, Bhopal, Chennai, Delhi, Hubli, Hyderabad, Jabalpur, Kolkata, Mumbai, Mysore, and Varanasi, and from four countries – Singapore, UK, USA, and Vietnam.
Through the 2014 Think Big Forum, WEConnect International in India empowered and prepared women business owners to scale up and reach new market opportunities. Participants learned from a number of women entrepreneurs who shared their stories of success, and many leveraged certification and self-registration to make connections with corporate buyers. During the forum, corporate member IBM announced its goal to procure $35-60 Million from women business owners in India, while Accenture, Intel, Marriott, and Walmart committed to buying more from women vendors.
Thank you to the generous sponsors of Think Big 2014: Accenture, IBM, Intel, the Rockefeller Foundation, certified women-owned business SuperSeva, the Walmart Foundation, and certified women-owned business Welspun. Thank you also to our partners: ALEAP, Bizdivas, Bristlecone, COWE, EMERG, eWIT, FKCCI, Her Entrepreneur Network, IIM Bangalore- NSRCEL, MAWE, Management Next, National Entrepreneurship Network, OCC, Pink Lemonade, Sheroes, TiE Bangalore, and TiE Chennai.
WEConnect International India meets with Jennifer McIntyre, US Consul General in Chennai
March 28, 2014 - Sucharita Eashwar, Executive Director of WEConnect International for India, joined a group of women entrepreneurs and leaders for a special meeting with Jennifer McIntyre, US Consul General in Chennai.
During the gathering, Consul General McIntyre acknowledged the work done by the participants and reaffirmed the US State Department’s continued support for women’s economic empowerment in India and South Asia.
WEConnect International India welcomes First Lady of Canada
WEConnect International welcomed Her Excellency Sharon Johnston, First Lady of Canada, during the dignitary’s recent visit to India.
Sucharita Eashwar, Executive Director of WEConnect International’s India initiative, and her team hosted Her Excellency at the offices of YourStory, a WEConnect International certified business, in Bangalore on January 27th.
“Her Excellency Sharon Johnston’s visit was an invaluable experience. We benefited from her business advice and briefed her on the women entrepreneurship scenario in India, our challenges as well as our successes,” Eashwar said.
The program, introduced by YourStory’s CEO Shradha Sharma, featured a panel discussion on women business owners. Additionally, Her Excellency Sharon Johnston had the opportunity to exchange views and experiences with a group of the 25 women business owners, 15 of whom are part of the WEConnect International network.
The session ended with Eashwar proposing a future visit to India by a delegation of Canadian women business owners.
Photos: Top left: Panelists (left to right) - Jeeva Anna George (Founder, Glutenfreeliv.in), Her Excellency, Sucharita Eashwar (MD, WEConnect International, India), Uma Reddy (MD, Hitech Magnetics & Electronics) & Revathy Ashok (Director, Iris Consulting); Top right: WEConnect entrepreneurs welcoming Her Excellency, Sharon Johnston; Bottom left: WEConnect India entrepreneurs with Her Excellency; Bottom right: Sucharita Eashwar in conversation with Her Excellency, Sharon Johnston.
Press Review | Think Big 2014 Forum
The Times of India | Big companies look to buy from women entrepreneurs
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