Panel + Q&A (*Maximum 4 Panelists)

Investing in female entrepreneurs: a social issue or an economic opportunity?

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SDG 5, along with many other social movements, has brought the world’s attention to the topic of Gender Equality. Some of the targets are clearly about social justice, but some are fundamental for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world. Two SDG Targets that highlight this are 5.5) Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision making in political, economic and public life; and 5.A)  Undertake reforms to give women equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to ownership and control over land and other forms of property, financial services, inheritance and natural resources, in accordance with national laws.

The McKinsey Global Institute report published in September 2015 highlighted how advancing women’s equality can add US$12 trillion to global growth. But what we see among impact investors, is that gender balance and gender lens is still not widely implemented as a practice. It can be slightly better than the mainstream, but there’s a lot to be improved. And it is so because it’s hard to get rid of our biases and open the space up to what is not the norm. Within the circle of impact investors, the number of female partners is still very low and female entrepreneurs are still largely overlooked. As a consequence, many technologies and solutions focused on half of the population fail to reach the market or lack the right adaptations to be suitable to women as well.

Join this discussion that will cover the topic from different geographic angles and will shed light into practical approaches to increasing female representation among investors, how to include more female entrepreneurs into investment portfolios and develop impact solutions that work both for men and women.

This session is facilitated by Ella Impact, the Gender Alliance and the BMW Foundation Responsible Leaders Network.


Confirmed Panelists

Julia Profeta Johansson  – Julia is a Brazilian impact investor and venture capitalist based out of Berlin, bridging the gap between the impact ecosystem and the mainstream through her 2 Ventures: Conscious Growth, the startup bank for good, and Ella Impact, the global female community for impact. She is also a Responsible Leader of the BMW Foundation.

Andia Chakava – Andia Chakava has over 17 years’ experience in fund management and 6 years of driving women economic empowerment goals. She is a global thought leader in gender lens investing and is one of the first female fund managers in Africa. She sits in the Non-Executive Board of Sterling Investment Bank, Founding Trustee and Chairperson of New Faces New Voices Kenya and non-executive Director of East African Educational Publishers. She is also a Responsible Leader of the BMW Foundation.



Unconfirmed Panelists

– Suzanne Biegel – Co-Founder Gender Smart Investing
– Aarti Wig – Co-Founder Yunus Social Business India


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