Lloyds Banking Group (through Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Brands) is delivering a national programme of events to help entrepreneurial women break down barriers they face when starting or growing their business.
Partnering with Google Digital Garage and mentoring organisation Be the Business, the Bank will deliver a number of free events in Glasgow, Manchester, London, Bristol and Birmingham over the course of 2020.
Ambitious about championing and leading on gender equality for small business, the Bank’s aim is to help female entrepreneurs unlock their potential and promote a strong pipeline of female led businesses for the future.
The events are in response to the government’s recent announcement to increase the number of female entrepreneurs by 50% by 2030, equivalent to nearly 600,000 additional female entrepreneurs. The events will be held across the UK in the run up to International Women’s Day on Sunday, March 8.
Each city will host an inspirational female guest speaker, including Vanessa Vallely OBE, founder of the professional women's networking website WeAreTheCity, in London and Lyn Bromley, managing director of people development organisation First Impressions, in Birmingham.
They will share their business knowledge and expertise, alongside a workshop led by Google Digital Garage, with a focus on growing self-confidence and essential self-promotion skills. Each event will also feature a networking session to connect and collaborate with fellow delegates.
Angela Connolly, Head of Business Banking Direct at Lloyds Bank, said: “The UK is a brilliant country for anyone looking to start-up and grow their business. However, the gender disparity we currently see amongst entrepreneurs limits the UK’s potential. Reports looking at the challenges facing female entrepreneurs show that there is a lack of local support for them, delivered in a way that is accessible and relatable. The events we have organised are designed to respond to that insight and have been deliberately spread across the UK to maximise our reach.
“This is a great opportunity to network with like-minded individuals, grow connections and collaborate with organisations.
“The programme is designed to nurture entrepreneurs’ confidence and, crucially, their professional skillset, empowering women to grow their businesses. While these events are mainly aimed at female entrepreneurs, everyone is welcome.”
Vanessa Vallely OBE, Founder, WeAreTheCity, said: “When I started up my business, having a network to provide me with advice and support from those who had been in my shoes was incredibly helpful. It gave me the courage of my convictions and gave me the confidence to make my business a success knowing I had people around me who could help.
“That’s why I believe these networking events will be invaluable and I am thrilled to have been invited to share my own experiences with aspiring and established female entrepreneurs.”