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Deadline: August 14, 2019 00:00 (CEST)| Apply here
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Eligibility: Women-run for-profit businesses in early-stage of development and growth

Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards 2020

Founded in 2006 by Cartier and INSEAD Business School, the programme is open to women-run, for-profit businesses in any country and sector working to create a strong social impact.

The Cartier Women’s Initiative is looking for committed women entrepreneurs heading businesses with the potential to grow significantly in the years to come. It is a unique opportunity for them to take their companies to the next level.

The Cartier Women’s Initiative aims to encourage inspirational women entrepreneurs worldwide to solve contemporary global challenges by:

  • supporting and recognizing creative women who are making concrete contributions to finding solutions for the future of our planet
  • bringing these business solutions to the largest audience possible. Since 2006, Cartier has accompanied 219 promising female business-owners and recognized 77 laureates.

Highlights of the competition

The 21 finalists, representing the top 3 businesses from each of the 7 regions (Latin America & the Caribbean, North America, Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East & North Africa, East Asia, South Asia & Oceania), will receive:

  • One-to-one personalized business and financial coaching prior to the Awards Week.
  • A series of business coaching workshops and networking sessions during the Awards Week.
  • Media visibility for the finalists and their businesses in the months leading up to the Awards Week and interview opportunities with local & international press during the Awards Week.

Prize money

  • The 7 laureates (1 from each region) will receive US$ 100 000 in prize money
  • The 14 finalists (the two runners-up from each region) will receive US$ 30 000 in prize money

Awards package

In addition to the prize money, all 21 finalists will be awarded:

  • A scholarship to attend the six-day INSEAD Social Entrepreneurship Executive Education Programme (pending admission to the programme based on eligibility criteria and selection process).
  • Ongoing support for the further growth and development of their business.

Eligibility criteria

To be considered for the Cartier Women’s Initiative, the business must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • For-profit: the business should be designed to generate sufficient revenues to support its operations and return some level of profit to its owners. Non-profit project proposals are not accepted.
  • Early stage: the business should have a proven business model and be in the initial phase of its development and growth (between 1 and 5 years of licensed/registered operations). We are focused on companies that are majority owned by founders and employees at the time of application.
  • Revenue generation: the business should currently be generating revenue from the sales of its products and/or services for at least 1 year as of the date of application. It being understood that a business that is generating revenue is not necessarily profitable in its first years of operations.
  • Fundraising: the business should not have raised more than US$2 million in dilutive funding. The Cartier Women’s Initiative caps the funds raised in order to ensure that the businesses selected fall within a similar range of development.
  • Impact: the business should meet at least one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are a collection of 17 global goals set by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015 for the year 2030. The SDGs are a call for action by all countries to promote prosperity while protecting the environment. They cover a series of social, economic, and environmental development issues.
  • Women leadership & ownership: The main leadership position must be filled by a woman either in the capacity of Director, General Manager or CEO. She must also own a significant stake within the company. The ownership of the business is evaluated based on the position of the candidate in relation to other stakeholders.
  • Legal entry age: The lead entrant must be 18 or the age of legal majority in the country of citizenship (whichever is older) on the day of the application deadline.
  • English proficiency: A good command of the English language is required (both verbal and written). We require the Common European Framework of Reference Level B2 and above. This level requires an understanding of the main ideas of complex text, technical discussion in business and your field of specialization and an ability to interact with fluency and spontaneity with native speakers.
  • Time commitment: The lead entrant must commit to dedicating 3 – 4 hours/week virtually from January to April to participate in the Cartier programme, can commit to submitting deliverables on time, and can attend 1 week of in-person workshops in early May (exact date TBC).

Interested in applying for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards 2019? Register your participation by following the application link and taking the suggested steps.


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