The Women In Africa Foundation (WIA) Philanthropy launched an unprecedented project on April 12, 2018: to create the first delegation of women entrepreneurs coming from the 54 countries of the continent. This ambitious project is conducted with the global strategy consulting firm : Roland Berger and a French multinational banking and financial services company: Société Générale, very involved on the subject of entrepreneurship in Africa. Focus.
Seven of the ten fastest-growing countries in the world are in Africa. In this regard, supporting women who disrupt the continent’s future through technological innovation is a win-win and sustainable investment for both African and international economies.
This is the commitment of the Women In Africa (WIA) Philanthropy Foundation, whose mission is to reveal and accelerate the innovative entrepreneurial initiatives of young and high-potential African women by integrating them into WIA Philanthropy. “If entrepreneurship has become a quasi-fashionable phenomenon among the young generation in Europe and the United States, African women choose entrepreneurship to contribute to the structural development of their country and often, unfortunately, also for a question of survival. We have much to learn from the great resilience of these women who will build the future of the continent, through innovations and disruptive technologies. Their talents and projects must be brought to light and accompanied. They could offer us unsuspected outlook!” says Marine Liboz Thomas, President of the WIA Philanthropy Foundation.
Project 54, a continent-wide deployment
In 2017, first year of this initiative, WIA Philanthropy promoted African women entrepreneurs who created pioneering companies in their sector to public opinion and to social and economic circles. “We received 260 applications in six weeks via 400 institutions. Sixteen laureates composed the first delegation of WIA Philanthropy. They were invited to present their project during a dedicated evening at our World Club Marrakech Summit” says Marine Liboz Thomas. In 2018, this dynamic has been amplified.
At the end of the West Africa Regional Summit in Dakar on April 12, 2018, a new call for application was launched to create the first delegation of women entrepreneurs coming from the 54 countries of the African continent. A premiere across the continent! “With Roland Berger, we have established very precise selection criteria. The start-up must be created or managed by an African woman; the product or service or technology must be innovative and / or has a strong social impact; that the start-up has achieved a first pull on the market (turnover, number of users, funds raised, …); the business model has proven itself and is able to adapt; the growth potential is strong in his own country, in Africa and in the world. And finally that the team is ambitious and has great execution capabilities” says Marine Liboz Thomas.
During the summer, an international jury will select the winners of the 2018 promotion. Their support and media coverage will officially begin on the special occasion of the WIA Revelations Night, organized during the second edition of the International Women In Africa Annual Summit (WIA) Initiative in Marrakech (Morocco) on September 27th and 28th, 2018.
International influence and targeted accompaniment
This exceptional evening will offer an international coverage to the winners, as well as extensive networking with more than four hundred leaders and major investors. A mentoring scheme will be initiated so that experienced female leaders from the Women In Africa (WIA) Initiative Community will accompany these talented young women. This mentoring will complete the coaching program that the laureates will have received before the Annual Summit and for which a platform dedicated to training (thematic MOOC on speaking, pitch, business opportunities, …) will be specially created. Project 54 should again attract numerous applications from talented African women! All this project is followed bu-y WIA Mag and the social networks of Women In Africa (WIA) Initiative, Roland Berger and Société Générale.