Deadline: 8 January 2020
The Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Visa Foundation, are seeking proposals that address this financing gap by testing models that catalyze investment into women-led SGBs through innovative approaches.
The Advancing Women’s Empowerment Fund (AWEF) will source, test, and promote creative and impactful solutions to address this investment issue, starting in South and Southeast Asia.
At the 2019 ANDE Annual Conference, ANDE announced an exciting new partnership with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), under the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) initiative, and the Visa Foundation to launch the ANDE Gender Equality Initiative, which aims to support women entrepreneurs in emerging markets.
Small and Growing Businesses (SGBs) are defined by ANDE as commercially viable businesses with five to 250 employees that have significant potential, and ambition, for growth. Typically, SGBs seek growth capital from $20,000 to $2 million.
Women-Led SGBs or Women-Led Businesses are defined by ANDE for the Advancing Women’s Empowerment Fund as companies that have a woman in a leadership position with strategic decisionmaking authority and meet at least one of the following criteria with a focus on companies founded and led by all-women teams from the local context:
- founded by a team of at least 50% women
- have a woman currently serving in a top leadership role (CEO, Executive Director, COO, etc.)
- 51% or more women ownership
Submissions should be for activities of up to 12 months with a maximum total request of US $150,000.
ANDE seeks proposals to pilot, test, or expand scalable solutions that tackle the financing gap for women-led SGBs in South and Southeast Asia to create learnings and insights for uptake by the broader SGB sector. ANDE is specifically focused on submissions catalyzing early-stage, growthoriented capital. They encourage submissions employing creative solutions to the financing gap that fit any of the following categories:
- More gender transformative approaches to delivering acceleration services including recruitment, selection, cohort and program design or other elements seen as constraints to the success of women entrepreneurs.
- Supplemental services delivered independently or in coordination with traditional accelerator programs including tailored consulting services, bespoke matchmaking, investment facilitation, mentorship or other approaches to address gender deficits in traditional acceleration.
- Novel approaches to addressing systemic constraints that result in less investment being received by women entrepreneurs.
- Initiatives that support informal enterprises converting to formal enterprises.
SGB service providers with programs in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam will be considered. Unfortunately, programs taking place outside of these countries will not be considered
- The Advancing Women’s Empowerment Fund is open to ANDE member organizations and non member organizations.
- The 2019 Advancing Women’s Empowerment Fund is focused on South and Southeast Asia. Proposals targeting any of the following countries in South and Southeast Asia are eligible to apply: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam. Proposals may include other countries as well but need to focus on at least one target country to qualify.
For more information, visit https://www.andeglobal.org/page/awef