Coca-Cola Teams Up With Women’s Organization to Offer Entrepreneur Boot Camp

Multiple city-wide program provides resources to women business owners

(Image: File)

Women-owned businesses in the U.S. increased 68% since 1997 and generated more than $1.4 trillion in revenues as of 2014.

The number of businesses owned by minority women has increased from 1 in 6 in 1997 to 1 in 3 in 2015, per the 2015 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report commissioned by American Express OPEN. While non-minority women-owned firms grew 40% over the 18-year time period, black women-owned firms grew 322% and Latina-owned firms grew 224%.

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More and more organizations are recognizing the need to reach out and provide leadership and development training to the women who run their own businesses. The Entrepreneur Boot Camp is targeted to small business owners looking to grow their companies and/or entrepreneurs thinking of starting a business. The Women’s Foodservice Forum (WFF), a leadership development organization, is partnering with The Coca-Cola Co., Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport and Amegy Bank of Texas to bring the Entrepreneur Boot Camp to Dallas on March 13, 2016, at the Hilton Anatole. The half-day interactive is meant to provide information and inspiration to empower attendees with the skills they need to grow their businesses.

WFF and The Coca-Cola Co. first partnered in October 2015 to present the Entrepreneur Boot Camp in Atlanta. The feedback received reinforced the need to bring the Boot Camp to women in other major cities around the U.S. and Canada, starting with the Dallas/Fort-Worth market in 2016.

“Our partnership with The Coca-Cola Co. on this project garnered a tremendous amount of interest from women in Atlanta last fall,” shared Hattie Hill, president and CEO, Women’s Foodservice Forum. “With the newest session, we aim to further support and educate women across a variety of industries this year and broaden our audience, kicking off this Boot Camp as a bonus session open to local DFW entrepreneurs, small businesses, and attendees of our Annual Leadership Development Conference.”

The Annual Leadership Development Conference is WFF’s premier event, attracting approximately 3,000 people a year from across the U.S. The Boot Camp will feature educational workshops on topics such as building and sustaining a business, marketing a business with authenticity, business certification, millennials and Generation Z. An Entrepreneur Expert Panel will also provide key insights on overcoming business challenges, which is one of the reasons women looking to grow or start their own businesses are highly encouraged to attend.

“Coca-Cola is committed to empowering women entrepreneurs across the globe as part of our 5by20 initiative, and we know our partners share the same aspirations for our community as we do,” said Kathleen Ciaramello, president of National Foodservice and On-Premise for Coca-Cola North America in a statement. “Teaming up with the Women’s Foodservice Forum and Dallas Fort Worth International Airport has granted us the opportunity to invest in women from across the U.S. and help them achieve their entrepreneurial goals.”

Through 5by20, Coca-Cola addresses the most common barriers women face when trying to succeed in the marketplace. This initiative offers women across the globe access to business skills training courses, financial services, and connections with peers or mentors—along with the confidence that comes with building a successful business.