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KARACHI: After three successful years in Pakistan, Standard Chartered Bank in partnership with INNOVentures Global (Pvt) Limited, announced the launch the Cohort 4 of Standard Chartered Women in Tech Programme (SCWomeninTech).

SCWomeninTech supports female-led entrepreneurial teams with business management training, mentoring and seed funding. This programme is designed to help address gender disparity in the technology sector and to use technology to tackle social challenges faced by communities. They are an important part of our entrepreneurship offering within Future makers by Standard Chartered as a global initiative to tackle inequality and promote economic inclusion.

In Pakistan, this initiative was launched in 2019 and so far out of the 700 plus participating enterprises, 66 female founders have graduated and 19 of them have also received seed funding. Through this programme the bank focuses on capacity building for women-owned small enterprises.

Commenting on this launch Rehan Shaikh, Chief Executive Officer Standard Chartered Pakistan said the SCWomeninTech is designed with the objective of removing barriers, providing opportunities and furthering financial inclusion for women in Pakistan, which is a key priority of the Government and State Bank of Pakistan as well.

Over the years this programme has surfaced to be a great platform for aspiring women entrepreneurs in Pakistan by helping them realize their true potential, he added.

“This initiative further builds upon Standard Chartered’s focus on increasing women’s access to entrepreneurial finance and supporting adolescent girls and women through capacity building. It encapsulates the essence of the bank’s sustainability strategy of Future makers, enabling the next generation to learn, earn and grow,” he said.

Partnering with INNOVentures Global, the Standard Chartered Women in Tech Programme aims to promote the economic and social development of women in Pakistan through innovation or technology led entrepreneurship.

This initiative was launched in Pakistan in 2019. SCWomenInTech is aimed at helping identify and grow female led businesses by bringing their unique business ideas to the market whilst celebrating women in Pakistan.

The WomenInTech incubators were first launched in October 2014 by Standard Chartered America as a local community project. The programme is now active in nine countries and since 2019 has reached a total of 1,632 young people along with providing a seed funding of USD 447,000.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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