The women of Chile want to play a more active role in society, and seek greater access to labor and entrepreneurial opportunities. BBVA has launched two important initiatives to eradicate inequality and encourage the incorporation of female talent into the world of entrepreneurship.
One of BBVA’s initiatives in Chile arose from a call to action rather than simply good intentions –the Camino al Éxito program (Road to Success). This project was created in partnership with Mujeres Empresarias (ME), an organization dedicated to supporting management by women in the world of business and which runs a network of 3,000 members. The joint program was launched in 2015 and features the full participation of BBVA Chile, which funds 100% of the program so the participants do not have to pay for their training themselves.
For its part, ME is responsible for organizing the program, and offers the training women need in accounting, finance and business, to which they often have no access. “This means they already start out with a handicap when they set up a business. Very few of them have the tools to develop and grow, so it’s very difficult for them”, says Carolina Eterovic, CEO of ME. So when they designed the program modules they made an in-depth analysis of women’s most important needs. The result is a program lasting three months that has the participation of leading academics from the top Chilean universities.
BBVA Chile and ME have set up a link whose most important feature is a shared interest in supporting and reinforcing female entrepreneurship. Eterovic highlights the key role of this partnership: “We need specific initiatives like BBVA’s. There’s a lot of enthusiasm, but it can't be translated into actions. That’s why it’s important to have the solid backing of a large institution, because it offers security and a close relationship which means that things can actually get done”.
Both organizations have also joined forces to present the BBVA Female Entrepreneur Award, a distinction that highlights the trajectory and the legacy of women entrepreneurs who serve as models due to their growth, innovative nature, and their of way of inspiring and motivating others to form part of the economic and productive development of the country.
BBVA Chile and ME hope that the participants in the training program will in the future be candidates for the BBVA Female Entrepreneur Award. In the words of Carolina Eterovic: “One day one of them could win the prize”.