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Meta partners with FICCI to enable 5 lakh women-led SMBs across India

Meta, under its #SheMeansBusiness program has partnered with FICCI’s Empowering the Greater 50% to enable and support 5 lakh women-led small businesses across India. The announcement was made during Meta’s inaugural National Women Entrepreneurship Summit to encourage industry dialogue and steps to support the MSMEs across sectors. 

Access to capital and relevant digital tools remain the leading issues faced by women led businesses. Out of over 63 million small businesses in India, approximately 20% are owned by women highlighting the need to bring more gender equality. Research and studies show that bringing girls and women online can spur economic progress, expand markets, and improve health and education outcomes for everyone. In today’s ever evolving digital economy, it is important to have access to information and tools that are relevant for business and entrepreneurs across different stages of growth. In India, 52% of small businesses using Facebook made at least 25% of their sales digitally in the past month. 

Together with FICCI, Meta will address the barrier to access right digital tools and resources by offering easy access to tools, programs and resources by Meta to women entrepreneurs in India. 

With this partnership, Meta will extend its support via three initiatives:

  • Facebook Business Coach - will let women entrepreneurs access self-paced lessons via Meta’s educational chatbot tool on WhatsApp and learn how to establish and maintain a digital presence. 
  • Grow your Business Hub, is a one stop online destination for micro, small and medium businesses to find relevant information, tools, and resources to further empower these businesses to find tools curated to their growth needs.  
  • In addition, Meta’s Commerce Partners Program will enable businesses to build a digital presence, go direct-to-customer and grow using the power of technology. These businesses will have the opportunity to adopt best-in-class solutions across the retail value chain via our partners, with additional onboarding support, training, and preferential pricing.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Narayan Rane, Hon’ble Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises said, “While digital adoption through social media platforms has led many businesses to grow and succeed, for a tangible inclusive economic development of the country, we need to support women owned businesses by creating an ecosystem which offers opportunities. We are hopeful that Meta’s pledge to support 5 lakh women owned businesses will create a supportive ecosystem for women and inspire them to become contributors to the overall development of the country."

Commenting on the partnership with Meta, Sanjeev Mehta, President, The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) said, FICCI- FLO Empowering the Greater50% is an ambitious women empowerment mission to enhance the entrepreneurial and decision making skills  of women. Our Government has been creating several opportunities through progressive policies  for women to thrive. However, achieving a common vision of building a gender inclusive nation with focus on women led development calls for aggregated efforts and multistakeholder partnerships. India Inc.’s stands committed to this cause. Our partnership with Meta will encourage more women to take up entrepreneurship by providing them with all the necessary support; thus augmenting the existing efforts in sync with the Government's larger agenda of being Atma Nirbhar and an inclusive nation.”

Ajit Mohan, Vice-President & Managing Director, Facebook India (Meta) said, “The pandemic has been an economic crisis for small businesses across the world. Women led businesses have been particularly affected due to lack of resources. We’ve seen that when supported with access to the right tools and resources, these women led businesses turn out to be more economically resilient. To help women led businesses of India, we are partnering with FICCI to enable 5 lakh women at grassroot levels with appropriate digital tools and resources. This is a part of our commitment to enable 1 crore small businesses over the next 3 years via our Centre for Fuelling India’s New Economy (C-FINE) at our new office in Gurgaon.” 

Meta created #SheMeansBusiness program in 2016 to be a space for entrepreneurial women to make valuable connections, share advice and move forward together. Meta has trained 1.5 million women in 38 markets around the world since 2016.

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