Panel discussion: Development of Women-Led MSMEs for the Digital Economy

A panel about women entrepreneurs in the digital economy for the Women Entrepreneurs Mean Business summit, exploring and challenging the gender stereotypes holding women entrepreneurs back from success and equality. Because we won’t wait 250+ years for women to have economic equality.

Because we won’t wait 250+ years for women to have economic equality.


Women Entrepreneurs Mean Business (9 to 19 November 2021) sought to galvanise urgent action to tackle gender stereotypes, with an incredible line-up of celebrated women entrepreneurs, high profile thought leaders on women’s economic empowerment, policymakers, academics, activists. Together, the Foundation, speakers and attendees are united by a common refusal to wait the 250+ years it is currently predicted to take for women to have economic equality with men.

Day three—”Digital Futures: women entrepreneurs won’t be left behind by tech”—featured a panel with Angela Baker, Senior Director of Corporate Responsibility at Qualcomm Inc, Henriette Kolb, Head of the Gender and Economic Inclusion Group at IFC, Fadé Ogunro, Founder and CEO of Bookings Africa and Cherie Blair Foundation for Women Global Campaign Board Chair (Africa), and Claire Sibthorpe, Head of Digital Inclusion, Mobile for Development Team at GSMA. In a discussion moderated by BBC journalist and presenter Geeta Guru-Murthy, they explored the challenges and opportunities for women entrepreneurs in using tech to fulfil their business potential.

Together, these sessions and the Foundation’s research report on the impact of gender stereotypes on women entrepreneurs set out the clear case for eradicating the gender gap in entrepreneurship and supporting women entrepreneurs, as well as identifying strong calls to action for different stakeholders at every level.