Nigeria, August 2022 – Visa has announced a grant towards the African Women Impact Fund (AWIF), a collaboration between Standard Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA). The grant will be utilized to fund the working capital needs of women fund managers across South, East, and West Africa and will target 55 women who responded to AWIF’s call to action and have been part of their programme since 2020.
More about this grant, partnership, and the state of women inclusion across the Sub-Saharan African is shared in this interesting Video.
Visa’s grant to the AWIF is an extension of the She’s Next program, a global advocacy program for women-owned businesses that has been expanded to Sub-Saharan Africa to further champion and strengthen African women business owners as they build, sustain, and advance their businesses.
Women fund managers in Africa continue to face numerous challenges in building sustainable businesses. Research shows slow-moving progress in the visibility and inclusion of women fund managers due to systematic barriers and investor bias. With African women accounting for just 7.6% of private equity and women-led businesses receiving only 7% of Private Equity (PE) and Venture Capital (VC) in emerging markets, this highlights the opportunities that exist to reduce the current gender gaps.
This is further reflected in the less than 1.3% of the $69.1 trillion global financial assets that are managed by women and people of colour.
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‘’The aim of She’s Next is to help women owned businesses thrive and our ambition with this grant is to enable access in a space where women owned firms are under-represented. Through this programme we aim to ensure that women are not only recipients but become decision-makers where institutional funding for businesses is concerned” said Aida Diarra, Senior Vice President & Head of Sub-Saharan Africa at Visa.