The Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Patrick Akinwuntan has said the decision to partner with the media entrepreneur and blogger, Linda Ikeji to host the latest edition of her yearly popular empowerment programme, ‘Selfmade Woman Conference (SMWC) 2021’ is in line with the bank’s empowerment policy for women, stressing that the challenges facing the nation has made it more imperative to recognize the potentials in women and develop it. According to Mr Akinwuntan, Ecobank recognizes women as the bedrock of most families and entrepreneurship in society, and if we must succeed as a nation, it is imperative that we recognize their unique potentials and support them sufficiently.
“Our decision to support Linda Ikeji conference aligns with our women empowerment policy. As a bank, we have been playing a leading role in this respect. Like you know, we have a long standing partnership with Tera Kulture, that is Bolanle Austen Peters who has come out with various movies such as ‘Bling Lagosians’, ‘Moremi The Musical’, ‘Fela and the Kalakuta Queens,’ ‘The Oluronbi Musical’ and others. Recently, we also supported ‘The Wait’, a movie inspired by the popular book from renowned lawyer and entrepreneur, Yewande Zaccheaus. We are also currently working with the Ogun state government to promote the Adire industry which is also primarily women driven. In the agric industry, we have supported the Anchor borrowers programme of the Central Bank of Nigeria across the six regions of the country to reach out to farmers, especially the women folk to support them financially to increase their farm size and yield capacity through the introduction of new techniques. Let me also add that Ecobank has a women empowerment programme “Ellevate” for women in Business; this will be publicly launched across the country in July. With Ellevate, we want to ensure we raise and recognize our women for the significant role they have always played to ensure a better society for us all”.
The Linda Ikeji Self-Made Woman, which debuted in 2013, is an advocacy project with the sole aim to mentor and provide financial empowerment to young female entrepreneurs or aspiring ones. it is essentially to build stronger economies and improve the quality of life for women, men, families and communities. Speakers for this year’s conference scheduled for Saturday, June 19th at the Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, include Tara Durotoye, renowned beauty and make-up entrepreneur; Dr. Ola Brown, Founder of the Flying Doctors Healthcare Investment Company; and Dr. Nancy Nnadi, Serial Entrepreneur & CEO of Telecom Distribution Company. They will provide actionable strategies and hope to women who would like to start their own businesses, enhance their impact in various industries or broaden their creative roles in traditional industries.
Other guest speakers will include Tomie Balogun, Investment Expert & Fin-tech Entrepreneur; Sola Adesakin, Finance Coach & Chartered Accountant; Kemi Adetiba, Film Maker and content creator; and TV star Dorathy Bachor.