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WeAct initiative empowers over 13,000 Indian women micro-entrepreneurs
Tue, 5th Mar 2024

The Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India (EDII), Ahmedabad and Accenture have achieved a significant milestone through the pioneering Women Entrepreneurs Access Connect Transform (WeAct) initiative. WeAct has provided comprehensive training and support to an estimated 13,470 women micro-entrepreneurs across 17 states and two union territories in India.

As part of a vision to empower rural women entrepreneurs, WeAct has given structured support to 3 different sectors: 5,625 women in the Food and Agriculture industry; 5,921 in the Handloom and Handicrafts sector; and 1,924 in household supplies. The aim has been to help these businesses become profitable and sustainable.

WeAct covers many aspects, such as market access, product development, and access to finance. In addition, statutory compliance processes are facilitated to enhance the competitiveness of the businesses. Technological adoption is also facilitated through the initiative, enabling entrepreneurs to streamline operations and compete more effectively in the marketplace.

Under WeAct, entrepreneurs have access to a range of business development services. This support covers crucial areas like business planning, marketing, and management, all of which help women entrepreneurs enhance their business efficiency, increase profitability, and achieve sustainable growth.

On reaching this milestone, Dr. Sunil Shukla, the Director General of EDII, expressed, "We are thrilled to have trained and supported hundreds of women micro-entrepreneurs through our WeAct initiative. This milestone reflects our dedication to empowering women entrepreneurs and driving positive change in local economies."

Meanwhile, Dr. Raman Gujral, Director, Department of Projects (Corporate), EDII, shared their broader vision, saying "Fostering inclusive economic growth in rural communities is our goal. By providing tailored training and support, we aim to create a conducive environment for women to thrive as successful entrepreneurs, catalysing sustainable development".

Samuel Moses Amarnath, Head of WeAct, has been instrumental in initiating transformative programmes to empower rural women entrepreneurs. His approach includes developing new products in line with market standards, improving packaging standards, embracing technological advancements, and even utilising online marketing and digital payments. Through this strategy, 100 exhibitions have been conducted within various corporate premises and grassroots-level exhibitions were held in 10 states and 29 districts pan India.

Some key achievements of the initiative include the completion of over 3,500 statutory compliance processes, onboarding of more than 2,700 members onto e-commerce platforms such as Amazon and Flipkart, offering product development services to over 2,800 members, and enrolling over 4,000 members in energiser workshops and exposure visits. Over 1,000 members were involved in exhibitions, generating revenue of 79 lakhs. The enterprise additionally facilitated financial assistance totalling 45 lakhs. The revenue growth impact on enterprises measures at 2.5 Crores after WeAct's intervention.