Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative

  Apr 26, 2022

Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative benefits almost 69,000 women entrepreneurs through $55 Million in new funding

The Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) has announced a new round of funding of US$ 54.8 million for programs supporting women entrepreneurs in developing economies to access digital technology and finance while addressing systemic data gaps. The funding is expected to reach almost 69,000 women-led/women-owned enterprises (WSMEs) and mobilize an additional $605 million in public and private sector funding – providing critical support as many WSMEs face mounting challenges due to rising prices, economic slowdown, the pandemic, conflict, and insecurity... Read more

Voices from the field:

Inspiration by Women Entrepreneurs

We feature original stories about the dedication, struggles, and grit of women entrepreneurs that We-Fi support in developing countries.

Building a solution to save food for those in need
| Q&A with Isis Espitia, Co-founder, EatCloud
Eatcloud was born to address the problem of food waste. To learn more about the tech startup, we spoke with Isis Espitia, Co-Founder and Chief Operations Officer, who also participated in the LAC Women Founders Accelerator Program by IDB Lab, the Innovation Laboratory of the IADB Group (Inter-American Development Bank Group) supported by Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi). Read the story...
Arab women entrepreneurs defy odds with leap into sportswear
"Across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), just 5% of formal firms are led by women. For every female entrepreneur, there are another six women who want to start a business but do not manage to achieve their goal," reports Thomson Reuters Foundation, in their latest collaboration with We-Fi. For the women entrepreneurs who are succeeding, what are they doing differently? Read the story...
Read More Stories


The first gender bond to support women entrepreneurs

Inter-American Development Bank's IDB Invest, International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Banco Pichincha have partnered to invest $100 million in the issuance of the first social gender bond in the Ecuadorian stock market. The bond principal - $50 million by IDB and $50 million by IFC - has a 5-year term and will finance women-led small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Ecuador. Learn more...

A Djibouti WeFi story 

Women CEOs still need support in many countries.  However, we need programs that adapt to their needs, not the other way around. This WeFi Djibouti project adapted global lessons to the local context and offered e-Commerce training and customized consulting. Read more...

Supporting Women-led SMEs in Conflict-Affected Regions

This 3-minute video highlights the BRAVE Women project implemented by SMEPS in Yemen. It focuses on leveraging partnership to empower women-led businesses, especially those in regions affected by fragile, conflict, and violence. More than 900 Yemeni women have benefited from the BRAVE project, which is supported by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and We-Fi. Watch the video...

Measuring the gap in female entrepreneurship

We-Data project, financed by We-Fi, "collects and publishes global gender-disaggregated data on business entry to address the insufficient standardized and internationally comparable data and the diagnostics of gender gaps in entrepreneurship." Read more...

She Wins Arabia for women-led Arab businesses

Women-led startups across the Middle East and North Africa are to benefit from "She Wins Arabia," a collaboration between the International Financial Corporation (IFC) and Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), which has set out to support incubators, accelerators, and venture capital funds through capacity building and training. Learn more...

Pivoting toward a resilient future

In case you missed it - We-Fi's most recent annual report features inspiring stories of women entrepreneurs who are pivoting their lives, businesses, and communities toward a resilient future. It also gives an overview of the global partnership and its operations, including data, diversity of projects, and investments. Download your copy...

The Global State of Small Business

Meta developed the Global State of Small Business Report series to monitor the health of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) globally, aiming to provide information that can facilitate research and policy discussions on how to support SMBs now and into the future. The current edition delivers insights from a survey conducted in January 2022 of 23,840 SMB leaders across 30 countries and territories, including 5,324 SMB leaders in the US. Learn more...

Implementing Partners


Conference on SMEs and the Urban Fabric 

April 28-29, 2022 | Trento, Italy & Virtual
During this international conference on SMEs and the Urban Fabric, researchers, policymakers, and practitioners will converge online and in-person to discuss how policies, regulations, and planning can help create an enabling environment for thriving entrepreneurship and SMEs to foster local development. The conference is organized by the OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions, and Cities, the SME Unit of the ILO Enterprises Department and the Ax:son Johnson Foundation. Learn more...

Digital Equity for Women’s Economic Agency

May 5 2022, 18:00-19:30CET / 12:00-1:30 pm EST
Join Wendy Teleki, Head, Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi); Virginia Littlejohn, Co-head of US Delegation to the G20/Women20 & Global Coordinator, W20 Women Entrepreneurs Act Initiative (WE Act); Veronica Beneitez Piñero, Deputy Head of Unit, European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA), and other experts at the upcoming UN ECOSOC’s 7th Multi-Stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology, and Innovation for the SDGs (STI Forum). The “Digital Equity for Women’s Economic Agency " side-event is organized by the G20 Women20 European Union Delegation and Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute. Learn more...

A Path to Sustainable SME Recovery 

May 23 & 24 2022 - 1 PM (Qatar Time) GMT+3 
Qatar Development Bank “QDB,” in partnership with the SME Finance Forum, is hosting the 6th International MENA Credit Guarantee Conference tagged “A Path to Sustainable SME Recovery.” The virtual conference will bring together leading credit guarantee experts and practitioners from the MENA region and beyond, alongside SME finance specialists and industry professionals, to discuss the performance and experiences of CGSs in addressing the financial needs of SMEs during and post-COVID-19 era. Learn more...
Missed an edition? Click here to read
Connect with us on LinkedIn
Connect with us on LinkedIn
View Flickr Album
View Flickr Album
Share Share
Tweet Tweet
Forward Forward
Share Share

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
We-Fi Secretariat · 1818 H St NW · Washington, DC 20433-0001 · USA