By Mary Nnah
Access and Diamond Bank commemorated the International Women’s Day by hosting female entrepreneurs to a conference on March 14, 2019 at the Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The event themed ‘Think W… Build Smart and Innovate’ featured insightful sessions, as the speakers highlighted issues and solutions on how women can effectively leverage on technology and finance to build profitable and innovative businesses.
While delivering the keynote speech, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Access Bank, Herbert Wigwe said, “Women, over the years, have continued to break aboundaries, reinvent the status-quo and take advantage of the opportunities provided by technology and quality financial systems to make things better in the society.
“This year, the International Women’s Day Conference, has been designed to educate women on how best to leverage innovations because we have come to the realization that female-owned businesses also hold the key to the growth and stability of our economy.”
Wigwe said, “As a bank, we are in full support of a gender-balanced society, this is why, through our Access Bank W Initiative, we educate women through our capacity building and mentorship programs, to ensure that they build and sustain brands that are globally recognised. We also have funding opportunities that are tailor-made for women and their businesses.”
This was followed by a goodwill message from the British Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria, Laure Beaufils, as she advocated more support for female entrepreneurs and called for solidarity amongst women to facilitate gender parity.
“It is commendable to see corporates step up to bridge the divide by providing women with platforms and education to help build successful businesses. Globally, women need to serve as support systems for one another and adopt a ‘Pull-Her-Up’ mentality, as against pulling each other down. Only then can we achieve the balance that we seek,” she said.
The event also featured two panel sessions, with speakers providing insights into how female entrepreneurs can access investment opportunities and build smart businesses using technology, product, and service differentiation.
Other business leaders and personalities that participated in the panel sessions include Bonaventure Okhaimo, Chief Operating Officer, Development Bank of Nigeria; Titi Osuntoki, Executive Director, Business Banking, Access Bank Plc; Adebola Adefila, Chief Executive Officer, Banrut Roll; Toyin Onigbanjo, Founder, August Secrets; Chukwuka Nonye, Founding Partner, Cuici Consulting and Director General, Delta Economic Summit Group; Patricia Nzolatima, Chairwoman, Bizolly Holding, among others.
The networking event ended with a grand dinner followed by an after-party anchored by ace Nigerian Disc Jockey, DJ Spinall and performance by Falz the Bahd Guy.