At Goldman Sachs, we believe that investing in women entrepreneurs around the world is one of the most effective ways to drive economic growth. Launched in March 2008, 10,000 Women is a $100 million global initiative to help grow local economies and bring about greater shared prosperity by providing 10,000 underserved women entrepreneurs in more than 43 countries with a business and management education, access to mentors and networks, and links to capital.
The multiplier effect of investing in women
10,000 Women is founded on research conducted by Goldman Sachs, the World Bank, and others, which suggests that an investment in female entrepreneurs can have a significant impact on GDP growth. Studies show that narrowing the gender gap in employment could increase global income per capita as much as 20% by 2030. Research also suggests that educating and empowering women catalyzes a virtuous cycle that positively affects the health, education, and productivity of future generations.
Emphasis on practical business skills
Entrepreneurs participate in locally designed certificate programs ranging from three to six months, which include courses such as marketing, accounting, market research, business plan development, strategic planning, accessing capital, and e-commerce. The training is intended to help open doors for thousands of women whose financial and practical circumstances would normally prevent them from receiving a traditional business education.
Access to a powerful network
10,000 Women operates in Africa, Asia, and the Americas through a network of nearly 90 academic and nonprofit partners and advisors. More than 30 of the world’s leading business schools participate and contribute to the curriculum.
See how these graduates are making an impact in their communities. Meet Rasha, who founded a center for arts and innovation in Egypt. Since graduating from 10,000 Women, she has expanded her business and created jobs for 25 women.
“I am very passionate about the 10,000 Women program and I am forever grateful for the chance I got to learn and grow.”
Meet Divya, owner of Krishna Printernational, a printing business in India. Divya’s business has provided many women their first jobs in the industry and has increased its revenue by over 300% since graduating from the program.
“Every woman has the power to change the social, economic, cultural, and political scenario, if only she has faith in herself.”
To date, 10,000 Women is generating measurable results in the businesses and lives of the program’s graduates in places as diverse as Afghanistan, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, and Liberia. 74% of graduates have created new jobs and 83% saw an increase in revenue. Additionally, 90% of graduates are mentoring other women in their community. The program continues to build momentum, and has created a worldwide network of women, each with their own challenges, experiences, and aspirations, but alike in their determination to succeed and to make an impact far beyond themselves.
This article is written by Goldman Sachs and not by the Quartz editorial staff.