Tuesday, 25 October 2022
Nineteen extraordinary women from across the country have been unveiled as the 2022 finalists in the UK’s leading programme for female entrepreneurs. Now in their 20th year, the everywoman Awards in association with BGF, celebrate female entrepreneurs from all walks of life, providing a platform for them to share their achievements, challenges, and stories of success. From the founders of multi-million-pound empires to those spearheading social enterprises for the greater good, this year’s finalists are the role models whose success will inspire future generations of female entrepreneurs. Selected from nearly a thousand entries, the finalists’ stories tell of success in the face of adversity, innovative ways to solve business challenges and an appetite for business growth.
The 2022 finalists span diverse industries – from pharmaceutical and medical businesses to spa chains and hair products, through to IT software and package design, from career coaching and construction machinery through to biodegradable wet wipes, early learning bibs and pregnancy activewear. The 2022 finalists were chosen by a judging panel comprising some of the UK’s top business figures including Daina Spedding (BGF), Chrissie Rucker OBE (The White Company), Panni Morshedi (Beauty Pie), Rosaleen Blair CBE (Alexander Mann Solutions), Sam Smith (previously FinnCap), Annoushka Ducas MBE (Annoushka Jewellery), Helen Pattinson (Montezuma’s Chocolate), Roni Savage (Jomas Associates) and Melissa Odabash MBE.
Female entrepreneurs face many complex challenges in setting up, growing, and sustaining their business. From gender stereotypes to a reduced access to finance, a range of barriers can prevent women’s businesses from thriving.
Women, on average, have 20% lower confidence than men in their capabilities to start a business and those who do pursue businesses will find that finance remains in short supply.1 Research suggests that women in the UK launch with, on average, 53% less capital than their male counterparts and male entrepreneurs are 86% more likely to be funded by venture capital.2 However, consistent with findings from past years, women are overall about 10% less likely to report a business closure than men.3 These financial and confidence gaps mean that female entrepreneurs are an untapped pool of talent and potential that if addressed, could result in women starting and scaling new businesses at the same rate as men in the UK, which in turn could contribute £250 billion to the British economy.4 At a time when growth and innovation are of such importance to the UK’s future, it is economically short sighted to not unlock this potential.
This is why the everywoman Awards continue to play such an important part in British enterprise, with 76% of former Award winners agreeing that their everywoman Award has positively impacted their business and 63% saying it improved their personal and professional confidence.5 The Awards are a platform and spotlight for incredible women in business to build their confidence and inspire the next generation of female entrepreneurs, whilst facilitating powerful introductions to business mentors, commercial relationships, and investors.
The award winners will be announced at a live ceremony on 8th December 2022 when the greatest female talent will once again unite to celebrate the achievements of these extraordinary women and their businesses.
Speaking about the finalists, Maxine Benson MBE, co-founder of everywoman comments: “For the past 20 years these awards have provided a platform to share the stories of hundreds of entrepreneurs; encouraging, emboldening, and empowering other women to follow suit. We hope their experiences will go onto inspire others and provide the motivation that will strengthen the backbone of the UK’s economy.”
BGF, the UK and Ireland’s most active growth capital investor, has been announced as associate partner for the everywoman Awards’ 20th anniversary. Having been named the most active investor in women-led businesses by the ScaleUp Institute for the last three years, BGF has invested £365 million in companies with at least one female founder since 2011.
Daina Spedding, Investor at BGF, said: “We’re incredibly excited to be supporting the everywoman awards in its 20th year. The economy can only become more dynamic through an increasingly diverse entrepreneurial landscape, which is why BGF is doing everything it can to support ambitious female-led businesses, providing the strategic support, connections and growth capital they need to thrive.”
For further information about the finalists or to book a table at the awards ceremony, visit: www.everywoman.com/ewawards
We wish our well-deserved finalists the best of luck!