Five female entrepreneurs; Oluwadamilola Soyombo, founder of Skooqs; Bolarinwa Kemisola, founder of Nextwear Technology; Adegbite Adenike, founder of The Trillionbucks Company; Zita Agwunobi, founder/CEO of Iverify; and Wunmi Akinsola, founder of Fashtracker have been accepted into the Standard Chartered Women in Technology Incubator Programme (SC-WITI) in Nigeria.
The five women who will get a $10,000 grant each, with business development advisory, mentorship opportunities and strategic business public relations.They emerged winners of the third edition of the scheme at a graduation ceremony held in Lagos recently.
Like the last two editions, the 10 young businesswomen in this cohort were shortlisted from over 1,000 applicants and went through a rigorous 16-week executive bootcamp during which they also interacted with business development coaches and executives from Standard Chartered.
At the end of the training period, five winners with the most compelling ideas were chosen. They will also receive portfolio advisory support for 10 weeks. They would be exposed to potential investors and join the global SCWIT alumni network to have access to additional networking events, resources, content, and business scaling opportunities.
“Today, we congratulate and celebrate these exceptional women who have gone above and beyond to prioritise the growth, sustainability and community impact of their businesses.
“As part of our Bold Stands, to Lift Participation initiatives like the Women in Tech incubator gives us the opportunity to unleash the full potential of female entrepreneurs who in turn are able to improve the lives of people around the world especially Nigeria.
“We continue to stand up for equitable access to ﬁnancial support for women and small business. We are committed to accelerating the provision of quality ﬁnancial services to women in Nigeria, purposefully connecting SMEs to international markets and building partnerships to expand the reach and scale of ﬁnancial services.
“These are just some of the ways we continue to reiterate to our communities and customers that we are Here for good,” the Country CEO, Lamin Manjang said.
Also speaking, the Head of Corporate Affairs, Brand and Marketing, Dayo Aderugbo, stated that, “We are optimistic about the impact this programme will have on their businesses.
“Through the Women in Technology Incubator program, the bank focuses on capacity building for women-owned small enterprises, under our Futuremakers by SC Community Investment initiative, which we believe serves as a great opportunity to support greater diversity in gender representation within technology entrepreneurship for women in Nigeria.
“The resources the beneficiaries have received from the sessions are theirs for life and will certainly support the resilience of their businesses while creating employment for more women and youths in the country.
“We are excited about the endless growth opportunities and the ripple effect this growth will have on the economy. This initiative builds on the bank’s track record of increasing women’s access to entrepreneurial finance, employability and supporting adolescent girls and women through financing and capacity building.”
Launched in Nigeria in June 2019, the SC Women in Tech Incubator (SCWITI) was established to support and promote the economic and social development of women engaging in a technology-led enterprise.
Implemented for the bank by the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC), Pan-Atlantic University (PAU), the programme targets female-owned technology-driven businesses, including start-ups, and provides the shortlisted candidates with training, mentorship and knowledge exchange sessions with industry experts and thriving businesses in the country. To date, nearly half a million dollars has been invested in the program in Nigeria.