Entrepreneurial women across the world are leading the way in tapping into the power of the digital economy to succeed and grow. As a celebration of their achievements, Mastercard has announced the inaugural Women SME Leaders Awards 2022, the first initiative of its kind to recognize and further empower women-owned and run SMEs in the Pakistan, Middle East and Africa.
Small enterprises in trading owned and run by women and with a turnover of less than US$13.6 million (AED50 million) and employing between six to 50 people are all invited to participate. “At Mastercard, we believe that women-owned businesses are the catalyst for economic growth, improving the lives of everyone, everywhere. The passion that women SME owners display is unmatched and they raise the bar for everyone. That is why Mastercardhas curated the Women SME Leaders Awardsto recognize and celebrate women entrepreneurs across Middle East and Africa,” said AmnahAjmal, Executive Vice President, Market Development, EEMEA for Mastercard.
The awards stemmed out of the inaugural Mastercard SME Confidence Index conducted last year which revealed that 81% of women entrepreneurs in the Middle East and Africa have a digital presence for their businesses, compared to 68% of their male counterparts. In terms of the digital footprint of these women entrepreneurs, social media (71%) leads the way, followed by a company website (57%).
These findings were aligned with Mastercard’s global commitment to connect 25 million women entrepreneurs to the digital economy by 2025.