WiE to open doors for women-led enterprises

(From left) Rashvin Pal Singh, Group CEO of Mereka and Biji-Biji Initiative, Noor Afifah Abdul Razak, Deputy Secretary General (Policy and Monitoring) MECD, Mohd Suhaimi Abdul Hamid, CEO of Standard Chartered Saadiq Malaysia and Juliana Adam, Director of Mereka.

By Joan D.

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 14: Futuremakers by Standard Chartered and Mereka Innovative Education (Mereka) recently introduced the ‘Women in Entrepreneurship (WiE)’ programme to empower and equip local women-led organisations in Malaysia with essential business acumen.

The programme, will be opened to organisations that have a minimum viable product (MVP) and a clear business model. Through several webinars and pitching sessions, the programme will shortlist only 20 teams to participate in a bootcamp following a highly competitive selection process. 

From the 20, the top five winning teams will receive seed funding from a pool of US$100,000 and undergo a six-month dedicated mentorship programme. During this period, they will receive guidance and support from experienced mentors in the entrepreneurship fields, a press statement issued during the launch said.

Deputy Secretary General (Policy and Monitoring) of Ministry of Entrepreneur and Cooperatives Development (MECD), Noor Afifah Abdul Razak, officiated the launch of the programme earlier this week at the Mereka Space, Publika Shopping Gallery here.

Mohd Suhaimi Abdul Hamid, Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Saadiq Malaysia said women entrepreneurs had enormous potential to drive economic growth and innovation in Malaysia.

“Through this programme, we want to provide them with the necessary tools, resources, and guidance to build successful and sustainable businesses.

“We are hopeful that our current partnership with Mereka will drive more opportunities for women entrepreneurs as they look for growth beyond the COVID-19 period, where more than 176,000 entrepreneurs nationwide were forced to close their businesses.”

Puan Juliana Adam, Director of Mereka and Chief Executive Officer of Biji-biji Initiative added, “We are thrilled to be partnering with Futuremakers by Standard Chartered and Mereka on this initiative. Women entrepreneurs face unique challenges in accessing the support and funding they need to launch and grow their businesses. 

“WiE is designed to address these obstacles by providing women entrepreneurs with access to essential resources and mentorship. By supporting women-led businesses, we can not only help them unlock their full potential, but also drive positive change and economic growth in communities across Malaysia.”

Applications for the WiE Programme are now open, and interested teams can apply via the Women in Entrepreneurship official website at: https://wie.mereka.my