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Helping Women Build Better Organizations in Latin America

Helping Women Build Better Organizations in Latin America

See how TechnoServe adapted Impulsa tu Empresa, company accelerator program, to raised target females business owners’ requirements.

The Impulsa Tu Empresa (“Boost Your Business”) program is a small business accelerator system, which aims to assist 850 tiny and growing businesses across Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Burkina Faso. With support through the Argidius Foundation, the Multilateral Investment Fund, the Walmart Foundation, the Citi Foundation therefore the PIMCO Foundation, TechnoServe provides participating companies mentorship, market connections, and usage of money to assist them to develop and expand. This system hopes to improve profits of those companies by $25 million and produce 750 new jobs by 2017.

Learn how Veronica, creator of IKO Imagen, expanded her company while changing TechnoServe’s assistance to her community. Learn More


Feamales in Central America face access that is unequal financial possibilities as companies, leaders, workers and manufacturers when compared with guys. Because of this, you will find less little and growing organizations (SGBs) where females have leadership functions, and of those SGBs with females leaders, you can find usually greater profitability and growth constraints in accordance with those led by guys.

A few of the challenges that are key business owners face whenever growing their organizations consist of:

  • Balancing household care and company duties
  • Accessing finance without appropriate ownership or a warranty
  • Joining business that is traditionally male-dominated


The program team focused on improving the gender approach to the selection and recruitment process, as well as the business training and advisory aspects of the program to better support women entrepreneurs. The team to help with gender mainstreaming in Impulsa Tu Empresa’s selection process

  • Included gender inclusive language and included pictures of females on marketing and communications materials
  • Reached off to other programs using women-led enterprises in the area to construct the menu of prospective SGB prospects
  • Included gender that is basic concerns into the application and meeting kinds
  • Composed the choice committee of both women and men

As soon as organizations had been chosen for Impulsa Tu Empresa’s company advisory and training services, there have been other adaptations to programming made to acknowledge the requirements of feminine entrepreneurs such as for instance:

  • Supplying a training that is online networking platform, which increased the flexibleness of training services, so females could nevertheless satisfy their loved ones and company duties
  • Company advisors started meeting that is offering business owners during off hours as well as company web internet internet sites to facilitate involvement within the system for ladies business owners
  • Tailoring content to deal with challenges ladies business owners face, such as for instance soft abilities like settlement
  • Advised company on guidelines for producing resource that is human, such as for example task explanations and clear criteria for advertising, to simply help increase SGBs capability to recruit and market ladies

The group additionally respected the importance of the continuing company environment in Central America, where numerous for the business people have near community ties in addition to strong relationships due to their workers. This implied that staff needed to activate and persuade companies associated with necessity of including a gendered lens in their company decisions


Up to now this system has supported over 590 tiny and growing organizations, of which 39 per cent are women-led companies, and thus the company has a lady senior supervisor or a woman in a vital role that is decision-making. These lenders have actually increased profits by on average 35 per cent and created 733 brand new jobs with TechnoServe’s help. This program in addition has been able to address dilemmas of access to finance for feminine business owners by mobilizing over $860,000 to businesses that are women-led.

IKO Imagen: Enhancing The grouped Community Through Company

Yadira Veronica Bucardo along with her spouse started IKO Imagen, a textile and handbag business, with little to no capital and equipment that is used screen publishing. This season, Veronica learned about tip Tu Empresa, TechnoServe’s business strategy competition system, and made a decision to use, entering her business concept into that year’s business strategy competition. The business won place that is first securing $10,000 in money, which permitted them to buy brand new gear to improve manufacturing and develop the company. TechnoServe’s market connections enabled the organization to attain away to new clients and expand into various markets. Building on these very early successes, Veronica joined up with Impulsa Tu Empresa in 2013, to simply take IKO Imagen into the next standard of development.

Veronica Bucardo, Co-Founder of IKO Imagen

IKO Imagen’s business design breaks the mildew of local work techniques. The organization provides work that is decent both for gents and ladies, with reasonable wages, social safety advantages, and a respectful workplace environment by having a consider adding to the city to attain better living requirements. The employees is made up of a team that is full-time of ladies and eight guys, and agreements five extra women for part-time work once they have to turn in bigger purchases. A majority of these women can be solitary moms with few task possibilities, who are able to now rely on day-to-day sustenance to aid their own families.

The business enterprise additionally tries to include gender-neutral individual resource policies. During the time of hiring, both women and men can put on to whichever jobs they feel fit their capabilities. The business provides training to all or any staff on all gear and technology. In addition, they will have partnered along with other organizations in your community to give development that is personal for several of these staff.

The employees’ families enjoy numerous advantages of the organization too. The business has partnered with two community schools to ensure that workers’ young ones get a training. IKO Imagen has an understanding with an exclusive doctor, whom attends to workers’ kids of most many years, making sure the families get adequate health care bills. Another advantage that the workers enjoy in IKO Imagen is versatile work schedules, which means that ladies workers can nevertheless make time to satisfy their loved ones duties such as for example using kids to college when you look at the early early morning, feeding them at meal and assisting all of them with schoolwork.

Veronica Bucardo along with her group are exceedingly involved with community outreach. The recognition they will have gotten has permitted them, together with Los Angeles Universidad Centroamericana, to provide scholarships to your most useful pupils of this community. Veronica can be presently hunting for lovers to simply help with a housing task, which aims to increase the living criteria of her workers.

The assistance Veronica has gotten from TechnoServe may help her develop her company and continue steadily to enhance the life of her workers and community. Recently, IKO Imagen established a line that is new of footwear and handbags, growing their share of the market. The company’s increased exposure of producing a comprehensive and work that is supportive lies in the middle of its success.

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