German development agency, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)’s project, Her&Now, announced the launch of its first women entrepreneur networks in Manipur and Nagaland.
The Her&Now project, which has been working to create a more enabling environment for women-led businesses in India since 2018, has till date worked with over 800 women entrepreneurs across tier II & III cities in India.
The Her&Now project in Manipur and Nagaland is being implemented in partnership with Dhriiti- The Courage Within.
The Women Entrepreneur Manipur Network (WEMN) is led by the entrepreneurs who were part of the Her&Now support programme and other established entrepreneurs from the state.
In Nagaland, GIZ Her&Now, Dhriiti and other state government bodies like the Investment and Development Authority of Nagaland (IDAN), and Startup Nagaland have come together to form the Women Entrepreneur Network Nagaland (WENN).
“GIZ Her&Now’s support programmes over the last 4 years have highlighted the need for all stakeholders to unite and turbocharge women’s entrepreneurship in their region. The women entrepreneur networks aim to address the need for an entrepreneurship ecosystem that can enable women in Northeast India to thrive; an ecosystem that brings business knowledge and skills, access to credit and market linkages, market confidence, capabilities, infrastructure, mentorship, etc. – all on one platform,” stated a press release.
Speaking about the Manipur network, Elizabeth Yambem, founder, Dweller Teas and a founding member of the network, said: “We envision a strong-knit community and an avenue of support for all the women entrepreneurs in the state. We want our collective voice to help shape the state policies so they can support women entrepreneurs better.”
In Nagaland, stating the vision of the network and the support for the entrepreneurs, Alemtemshi Jamir, CEO, IDAN, said: “We place great hope in the women entrepreneurs of the state. IDAN being associated with the state government, we have to create the portfolios and means in which the investment comes in, so we are very happy that GIZ, Dhriiti, and the women-led network are already doing a lot of work, and we would like to support them in the best possible manner and help build them up.”
These networks are the first step in GIZ Her&Now’s vision to create a structured ecosystem that can equip women entrepreneurs with key business skills, market opportunities, and connect them with investors and empower them to contribute more to the society and nation at large.
Speaking about the launch of these networks, Julia Karst, head of project Her&Now, GIZ said: “We are very proud to be launching the women entrepreneur networks in Northeast India. The networks’ launch marks an opportunity to create a more enabling environment for women entrepreneurs in Manipur and Nagaland, and help accelerate the growth of their businesses. The platform will enable women entrepreneurs to learn from and support each other, and truly thrive.”