IDB Lab, the innovation laboratory of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), in partnership with Google, has launched the LAC Women Founders Accelerator, an acceleration programme for STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) start-ups led by women in the Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region.
WeXchange, an IDB Lab platform that fosters the growth of women technology entrepreneurs in the region, and Google, in collaboration with Centraal, the entrepreneurial hub in Mexico, designed the ten-week virtual programme to help entrepreneurs from the region expand their networks, access mentors and investors, and receive training on key topics to develop their start-ups.
According to IDB, start-ups with at least one female co-founder or has at least one woman on their leadership team, with technology as a key component of their business, and with headquarters and operations in at least one LAC country, may apply to join the programme. The application period is open until September 12, 2021.
The 20 selected start-ups will participate in workshops on technology, digital marketing, leadership, business culture, and fund-raising, beginning with a specific diagnosis of each start-up and the unique challenges it faces. The entrepreneurs will also have numerous one-on-one mentoring sessions with investors and experts from Google, WeXchange/IDB Lab, and Centraal’s networks.
Additionally, the programme will include a Demo Day during the ninth edition of WeXchange’s annual forum, which will be held virtually on December 1 and 2, 2021.
During this event, the entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to pitch their companies in front of a group of venture capital investors from the region.
CEO of IDB Lab Irene Arias said that the Lab’s commitment to gender diversity and inclusion in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, is one of the cornerstones of the IDB Group’s Vision 2025, which seeks to drive recovery and inclusive growth in the LAC region.
“This unprecedented alliance between WeXchange, Google, and Centraal will allow us to provide relevant tools to women entrepreneurs in STEM who are developing innovative solutions to solve great challenges, thus contributing to the probability of success of their start-ups and the development of the region,” Arias said.