Visa Launches “She’s Next” to Support Female Entrepreneurs - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine January-March 2019 Issue

Black women are the fastest growing segment of entrepreneurs and it appears that Visa wants to help. The financial institution recently announced a new global initiative to support female entrepreneurs. She’s Next, empowered by Visa, is an initiative created to assist women in growing their small businesses.

To help support female entrepreneurs, Visa teamed up with Rebecca Minkoff and the Female Founder Collective (FFC), a network of female-owned businesses. According to a recent release, Visa, Rebecca, and the FCC will help build awareness of female entrepreneurs, invest in women across the socioeconomic spectrum around the globe, and provide them with opportunities to build their businesses and brands.

“Starting and growing a business can be both incredibly rewarding and daunting. That is why Visa is committed to empowering women business owners through a year-long program of education, cutting-edge digital payment technology, and a powerful peer network,” said Suzan Kereere, global head of merchant sales & acquiring Visa. “There is never enough time or enough resources, but when we work together to support each other, amazing things can happen.”

Dating back to 2014, more than 163 million women around the world have started a new business, and the global rate of female entrepreneurship is increasing more quickly than their male counterpartsShe’s Next will champion this growing trend with additional support from leading small business advocates, including Square and Yelp.

Visa

Visa unveils a global initiative to champion women-owned small businesses everywhere: She’s Next, Empowered by Visa. Visa executives Mary Ann Reilly (left) and Suzan Kereere (right) are joined by Rebecca Minkoff, founder of Rebecca Minkoff (center) and the Female Founder Collective at an event at Hudson Yards in New York City. (Photo: Business Wire)

She’s Next has a lot in store. Today they previewed a small peek into their ecosystem at Hudson Yards in New York City, that coinciding with the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Big Show. Over the course of 2019, Visa will launch pop-up events around the world that offer a range of practical tools, resources, insights, and networking opportunities for female entrepreneurs:

Interactive Workshops: Beginning with an inaugural event in Atlanta, on Jan. 30 alongside Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta, Visa will host a series of interactive workshops to tackle business challenges specific to each community. Future events are planned for the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ and beyond.

Access to Experts: Each workshop will include experts from Visa, local and national subject matter experts, and partners to maximize benefits to female business owners. Specifically, at the inaugural workshop in Atlanta, leaders from Visa, Square and Yelp will bring their own expertise and innovation to the workshop.

New Research: Initial insights from a forthcoming survey commissioned by Visa of US-based female small business owners will help to inform the issues that matter most to women entrepreneurs. Select findings include:

Key Motivators: The top three things women cite as motivators in starting their own businesses are: pursuing their passion (48%), having financial independence (43%), and having flexibility (41%).

Money Matters: Nearly three-quarters of women (73%) report it was difficult to obtain the funding they needed to start their own business. In fact, six in 10 (61%) self-funded their business.

Digital First: When asked to identify top workshop topics they would like to learn more about, respondents said improved social media and digital marketing skills to promote and grow their businesses.

Advertising Campaign: In 2019, Visa will launch phase two of its multi-million dollar Money is Changing marketing campaign in the United States, building on its millennial women focus and featuring real-life female business owners. Visa will feature a diverse spectrum of women in the campaign who will highlight the practical steps they have personally taken to change the game and challenge existing taboos when it comes to money.

For more information on Visa’s small business solutions, click here.

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Sequoia Blodgett

Sequoia Blodgett is a Reporter for Black Enterprise. She is also the founder of Commas, a virtual entrepreneurship resource center that provides everything you need to know about product development, marketing, publicity, and fundraising, to make your entrepreneurial journey a lot less stressful.


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