What Women Founders Wish for this Women's Entrepreneurship Day
By: WE Staff
On this Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, we asked women founders what is their wish and hope for the future of the Indian startup ecosystem. While some hoped for a more inclusive industry, others spoke about the lack of opportunities & funding for women-led ventures. These words will pave way for the startup industry’s evolution which will be helmed by these very enterprising women.
The Indian startup ecosystem has lately emerged as one of the strongest startup hubs in the world. With innovative startups solving critical problems while generating value for all stakeholders, the Indian startup ecosystem’s growth story has been the stuff of dreams.
However, it is important to acknowledge that nothing in the world is perfect and neither is the Indian startup world.
On this Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, we reached out to women founders to understand their perspective on where the Indian startup ecosystem was lacking. Enterprising women entrepreneurs from various industry sectors shed light on how the entire ecosystem can be made stronger and inclusive for all.
Shreedha Singh, Co-Founder & CEO, T.A.C - The Ayurveda Company
“On Women Entrepreneurship Day, my wish for the Indian startup ecosystem is a more inclusive and supportive environment for women entrepreneurs. I hope to see increased access to funding, mentorship, and networking opportunities specifically tailored to the unique challenges faced by women in business. The change I aspire for is a shift in perceptions, fostering a culture that values and promotes diversity in leadership roles. By breaking gender stereotypes and encouraging equal opportunities, we can harness the untapped potential of women entrepreneurs, contributing to a more vibrant and innovative startup ecosystem in India.”
Kamalika Bhattacharya, CEO and Co-founder, QuoDeck
“I see a new horizon in India's startup ecosystem that is tilting decidedly towards inclusiveness. A mere 18% of startups have women at the helm, a figure that needs to rise significantly. My vision encompasses an entrepreneurial future where female-led ventures are on par with others. This transformative shift, I am certain, will fuel innovation and catalytic economic growth. Like a beacon for tomorrow's entrepreneurs, it will pave the way for a dynamic and diverse entrepreneurial landscape. In addition, it is crucial for the woman who has shattered the glass ceiling, to extend a helping hand and foster the entrepreneurial aspirations of other aspiring women."
Dolly Kumar, Founder and Director, Cosmic Nutracos Solutions
“On this Women Entrepreneurship Day, I wish for an Indian startup ecosystem that is truly inclusive and supportive of women entrepreneurs. I envision a future where women are not just participants but also leaders in shaping the innovation landscape. To achieve this, I believe we need to address the following:
- Access to Funding: Women entrepreneurs often face difficulties in securing funding, hindering their ability to scale their businesses. I hope for a more equitable funding environment that recognizes the potential of women-led ventures.
- Mentorship and Networking Opportunities: Women entrepreneurs often lack access to mentors and networking opportunities, which can be critical for growth and success. I hope for a more robust mentorship and networking ecosystem that empowers women entrepreneurs to connect with experienced individuals and build valuable relationships.
- Gender-Neutral Support Programs: Support programs should be designed to address the specific challenges faced by women entrepreneurs, such as balancing work and family responsibilities. I advocate for gender-neutral support programs that provide tailored assistance to women entrepreneurs.
By fostering a more inclusive and supportive ecosystem, we can unleash the entrepreneurial potential of India's women and propel the nation's startup ecosystem to even greater heights.”
Dishi Somani, Founder, DishiS Designer Jewelry
“On this Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, I hope to see a future where women get recognized and get equal opportunities and an environment where they can shine bright like a light. I aim to see a world where the world of business is genderless and to collectively pave the way for a diverse and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem that celebrates the unique contributions of every woman entrepreneur. When we all work together, we can leave a legacy of inspiration and empower the future generation.”
Shruti Swaroop, Founder, Embrace Consultancy
“On this Women’s Entrepreneurship Day and every other day of the year, my wish is for the startup ecosystem to evolve into a diverse, inclusive space that fosters innovation and embraces equality. As a woman entrepreneur and a Global DEI consultant, I envision a future where opportunities are abundant, irrespective of gender. I strive to work towards the same and catalyze change not just in the workplace but at the grass-roots level. I hope there will be increased awareness of the significance of diversity, equity, and inclusion. It is my aspiration that every startup begins recognising the value of diverse perspectives to create a collaborative environment that propels us all forward. I hope the entire start-up ecosystem will support women and their ideas, be it for mentorship, funding, or networking. Let's collectively cultivate a culture that empowers women entrepreneurs to thrive.”
Zaiba Sarang, Co-founder of iThink Logistics
“On this Women's Entrepreneurship Day, I earnestly wish for a more inclusive and supportive startup ecosystem in India and a role model that all women entrepreneurs can look up to. The future I envision involves heightened accessibility to mentorship and resources tailored explicitly for women-led startups. We need an environment that fosters the growth of diverse voices, paving the way for innovative ventures that contribute significantly to the progress of our nation. As a woman entrepreneur, I aspire to witness a transformative change in the ecosystem, where empowerment becomes the cornerstone, enabling the next generation of women entrepreneurs to thrive and make impactful contributions to India's entrepreneurial landscape.”
Nidhi Singh, Co Founder, Samosa Singh
“In the vibrant landscape of Women Entrepreneurship in India, I find boundless inspiration and a reservoir of untapped potential. Women entrepreneurs often face unique hurdles - As a leader, I believe it is our responsibility to dismantle these barriers, foster an environment of inclusivity, and amplify the voices of women entrepreneurs.
As a leader, my belief is that the success of a one-woman entrepreneur paves the way for countless others. I hope the future of the Indian startup ecosystem is one of inclusivity, where gender diversity is not just a buzzword but an integral part of the entrepreneurial fabric. I hope to create an ecosystem that fosters equal opportunities, dismantles gender biases, and provides a level playing field for women entrepreneurs to thrive.
The change I would like to see is a significant increase in access to funding for women-led startups. Bridging the gender financing gap is crucial for unleashing the full potential of women entrepreneurs. Encouraging more investors to actively support and invest in women-led ventures/startups can be transformative in Indian society.
In addition, collaborative efforts between established leaders and emerging talents are pivotal to fostering a supportive ecosystem that propels these ventures toward sustained success.”
Nikita Malhotra, Co-Founder, Winston
“My wish for the future of the Indian startup ecosystem is a profound metamorphosis towards true gender inclusivity and endless support for women-led enterprises. I wish to see a landscape where entrepreneurial opportunities are agnostic to gender, and the ecosystem thrives on the diverse perspectives that women bring to the table. It's not just about breaking the glass ceiling; it's about ensuring that the shards become stepping stones for aspiring women leaders. As the co-founder of Winston, my hope is that our endeavors pave the way for a future where every woman with a vision is empowered to lead, innovate, and thrive in the entrepreneurial landscape.”