Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative

  Sep 07, 2022

Putting women at the center of development policy

By Wendy Teleki, Head of the We-Fi Secretariat

As employers of women, creators of innovative and inclusive solutions for their communities, and investors in their own families and communities, women entrepreneurs are a powerful force for good. Now is the time for development policymakers to recognize women’s central role in a time of intersecting crises and design policy tools that help unleash their full potential. Read More...

GPFI Workshop: New Approaches to Closing Finance & Data Gaps for Women-led Businesses

A GPFI Workshop on New Approaches to Closing Finance & Data Gaps for Women-Led Businesses was held on July 21, 2022.  The event focused on discussing models, including input into a proposed WE Finance Code, that can be applied to take GPFI recommendations on sex-disaggregated data into action.  

Read Event Summary   |  Watch Recording

We-Fi at G20 Ministerial Conference on Women’s Empowerment (MCWE)

Wendy Teleki, Head of the We-Fi Secretariat spoke the G20 MCWE in Bali, Indonesia. Wendy reiterated that women entrepreneurs are playing a central role in the global recovery, as they are needed to tackle urgent issues such as building resilience in fragile and conflict-affected areas, creating climate-friendly agriculture, delivering solutions during the pandemic, and improving the care economy. Read More...

Voices from the field:

Inspiration by Women Entrepreneurs

We feature original stories about the grit of women entrepreneurs that are supported by We-Fi programs in developing countries.

We-Fi-supported entrepreneurs in Nigeria share their success stories

Three We-Fi-supported entrepreneurs in Nigeria shared how the program empowered their businesses to achieve their full potential. Watch video

Documenting stories of resilience

Thomson Reuters Foundation profiled We-Fi-supported women entrepreneurs in a series of stories. Read the stories
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The Case for Investing in Women Entrepreneurs

The Case for Investing in Women Entrepreneurs

Recognizing the urgency of investing in women, the Case for Investing is not only a testimonial to We-Fi’s track record but, more importantly, the need for the global development community to invest in the economic potential of women entrepreneurs. As it moves into its second five-year term, We-Fi will focus on systemic constraints and help women entrepreneurs address the overlapping challenges they face.

Download We-Fi's Case for Investing in Women Entrepreneurs

A Review of
We-Fi's Theory of Change

We-Fi is pleased to present a comprehensive literature review to identify evidence on what works to support women entrepreneurs in developing countries. The paper covers both the evidence of constraints women entrepreneurs are facing and evidence of intervention effectiveness in We-Fi’s four focus areas: access to finance, access to skills and networks, access to markets, and an enabling environment.

Read the Evidence Paper

In case you missed it:

Updates from Implementing Partners

African Development Bank and African Guarantee Fund sign agreement with Tanzania’s CRDB Bank to boost access to finance by women’s SMEs

The facility is coupled with a technical assistance grant from the African Development Bank’s Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa Initiative, supported by We-Fi. Read more...

The World Bank: Integrating gender into the market information system in Cote d’Ivoire

In order for market information systems to reduce gender gaps in agricultural production, critical attention must consider the potential barriers to access and use of technology for women possibly due to gendered social norms. Read full policy note...

The inspiring story of Dina Abdurahman Mukred

BRAVE Women, a We-Fi program from the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), has supported many women entrepreneurs in Yemen. Dina Abdurahman Mukred shared her story. Watch video...

IFC helps Uzbekistan’s Ipoteka-Bank boost lending for smaller businesses, women entrepreneurs

We-Fi is providing performance-based incentives to help the bank boost access to finance for women-owned businesses. Learn more...

EBRD supports small businesses and female entrepreneurs in Kosovo

A new financing package will be allocated to supporting investments by women-led businesses. The funding is secured under the EBRD’s Women in Business program, which promotes women’s entrepreneurship and their participation in business by providing access to finance and know-how. Learn more...

From the development community:

Women entrepreneurship news and events

Closing gaps, increasing opportunities

In Nigeria, cash-based collateral financing is currently being piloted and evaluated within the World Bank's We-Fi program, in partnership with the Development Bank of Nigeria and Access bank. Read more...

UN, Nigeria strikes partnership to promote women entrepreneurs’ inclusiveness

With support from the African Development Bank, UN Women, and We-Fi, the Federal Government of Nigeria will begin a project to promote gender-responsive procurement practices. Learn more...

Global SME Finance Forum: September 13, 2022

In partnership with the National Bank of Cambodia, the SME Finance Forum is hosting the 9th Global SME Finance Forum, focusing on the power of digital transformation in promoting inclusive, sustainable, and responsible finance for MSMEs. Learn more...

Financial Alliance for Women Annual Summit: November 2-3, 2022

Each year, the Alliance convenes financial, technology and real sector players to share business solutions for women’s financial empowerment. The 2022 Summit will explore topics that are critical to enable inclusive growth for women and build sustainable economies. Learn more...

World Economic Forum: How female-led start-ups can transform Africa

Until gender parity is improved throughout the African continent, female entrepreneurs will remain under-earning compared with their male counterparts. Read more...
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