PNE Supports NatWest Initiative Funding Female-led Start-ups
NatWest, along with RBS and Ulster Bank, has teamed up with Crowdfunder.co.uk to deliver the Back Her Business initiative, which aims to support a reduction in the gender gap within access to business finance.
The initiative invites female entrepreneurs and women-led businesses to crowdfund through its platform, with the bank potentially ‘topping up’ crowd sourced funding by up to £5,000 or 50% of the total raised, pledging £1 million a year to this provision.
Those taking part will also be able to develop their ideas via a range of support options, such as coaching, mentoring and opportunities for collaboration.
The initiative responds to findings that men are twice as likely as women to start a business and is one of several NatWest led projects helping to change this, contributing to their ambition of supporting 400,000 female-led businesses to start by 2025.
PNE Group is working with the project, developing a UK wide network of partners to provide entrepreneurship support for participants and engage hard to reach communities. Additionally, the team will be providing ongoing evaluation of the programme’s impact.
Jill Arnold, sustainable banking lead at NatWest, comments, “The wrap around support the programme offers has received the strongest feedback. Using the bank’s Entrepreneur Accelerator programme, our Women in Business proposition and industry experts, we will be offering bespoke training and coaching, networking opportunities and local events.”
“We were told that they felt there was a lack of appropriate finance, mentoring, role models, local support and tailored advice and with Back Her Business, we want to tackle this head on.”
On 8th March, NatWest released the government-commissioned Rose Review, which revealed advancement of female entrepreneurs is a £250 billion opportunity for the UK economy and recommends increasing start-up funding for women, as well as providing greater family care support.
The Back Her Business website is now open to register your interest, with more information being shared from 10th April. The initiative is open to UK residents with new UK projects and some eligibility criteria apply.