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Investment-readiness programme for 50 women entrepreneurs

The Gibs Entrepreneurship Development Academy is recruiting 50 South African women entrepreneurs for the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women's intensive, seven-week investment-readiness programme!
Investment-readiness programme for 50 women entrepreneurs

Are you a woman entrepreneur that would like to push your business, so it is investment-ready? Then amplify your business on its journey to success by applying for the Road to Growth programme. The intensive, seven-week business management and investment readiness training programme will be brought to South Africa for the first time, building on the 2,800 women it has supported so far worldwide.

Delivered by the Gibs Entrepreneurship Development Academy (EDA), Road to Growth will offer a select group of 50 promising women entrepreneurs the opportunity to progress as business owners by building business skills, financial literacy, networks, and confidence. Starting in August and free-of-charge to participants, the programme represents a "next step" in women’s entrepreneurial journeys so their businesses can boom across South Africa!

This training is the latest offer from the partnership between the GIBS EDA, the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women and DHL Express, who since April have been collaborating to bring the Foundation’s award-winning HerVenture app to over 3,500 women business owners in South Africa. The free and flexible app aims to promote growth and resilience, with tens of thousands of users worldwide reporting improved business performance. Download HerVenture from the Google Play Store here or the App Store here.

Road to Growth training will be delivered mostly online using a unique, custom-built learning platform, alongside in-person classes. Selected participants will progress through Road to Growth by building and developing their business growth plan each week to achieve a clear vision and direction for their business. Each of the programme’s seven weeks covers a new topic, including contextualising and understanding your market, digital marketing and communication, and understanding your finances from building capital to managing cash flows.

The programme will kick off in August during South Africa’s Women’s Month. Women’s Month is an important month to celebrate and reflect on the successes that women have achieved, but to also provide opportunities to women, to support and enable them to continue thriving as entrepreneurs and in turn, to inspire other women to venture into entrepreneurship to create job opportunities to combat the country’s employment crisis. The partners hope that this incredible programme provides much-needed acceleration of women’s economic empowerment in South Africa. This, in turn, will spell huge benefits to families, local communities and the economy as women invest in their children’s health and education, create jobs, innovate, provide essential services, and challenge gender stereotypes as leaders.

The Cherie Blair Foundation for Women’s Road to Growth programme is currently also running in Nigeria, Kenya, and Guyana, and has previously run in Mexico, Vietnam, and Indonesia. It’s proven a highly successful model, enhancing business knowledge and confidence, creating growth, developing networks, and increasing women entrepreneurs’ preparedness to access to finance. Over 90% of participants have reported that they have grown their networks through the programme and have gone on to implement improved business practices.

Entrepreneur Salome Igbinosa took part in Road to Growth in Nigeria. She praised the programme and its impact on her businesses: “As a result of what I learned attending the Road to Growth programme, I was able to expand my business, and do a total makeover of it, which meant moving it from my home to a shop as well as employing more staff. I have been able to evolve and do new things using the practical lessons we were taught in class and applying these to my business. It was amazing to meet and study with other women entrepreneurs, from various backgrounds. I really did enjoy it.”

What are you waiting for? Review the criteria below and if you meet the criteria, apply for the free programme now, to set yourself and your business up for an incredible and life-changing journey!

Road to Growth Programme Selection Criteria:

  • Minimum age: 21 years
  • Minimum number of years in business: 3 years
  • Own a registered business in South Africa
  • Annual revenue must be at least R500 000 (total sales in one year)
  • Must have 50% or more female ownership
  • Must employ at least two or more persons full-time (excluding the owner)
  • Must be involved in the full time running of the business
  • Minimum educational qualification: Matric certificate, but this may be assessed on a case-by-case basis
  • Must have English language proficiency
  • Must have access to an electronic device and internet connectivity for online learning and basic computer literacy
  • Must not have participated in any of the GIBS EDA programmes in the last 18 months
  • Have a strong desire and commitment to grow their business

The closing date for applications is the 14 July 2022, with the programme set to start in August 2022. Apply now using this link:

Disclaimer: We will only be in touch with shortlisted applicants. Please note that by applying for this programme, you consent to your personal information being supplied to the GIBS EDA and the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women for further communication. Programme delivery will be blended with in-person sessions in Johannesburg with travel and accommodation at your own cost (concessions might be made for joining virtually if the session allows for a hybrid approach).

For application enquiries or programme details, contact Lorenzo Line at az.oc.sbig@LeniL. For media enquiries, contact Faiza Mallick at az.oc.sbig@FkcillaM

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