Enthuse Marketing Group (EMG) is introducing the Enthuse Foundation, a not-for-profit organization that will offer resources, services, and grants to female entrepreneurs.
The Foundation, created by EMG founders Kim Lawton and Kristy Snyder, will offer both online and offline resources, including business pitch-night sessions, a mentorship platform, and networking events.
This concept grew from the women-certified (WBENC) marketing consultancy seeking to foster the growth of women-owned businesses within the hospitality industry. "As female business owners, we knew that women were less likely to receive funding than men, and even more so when it comes to second-stage funding," says Lawton, explaining how female entrepreneurs receive only 2.2% of all venture capital funding. "As women business owners, we feel compelled to do our part to help change that."
Still, it wasn't easy to develop an effective community. While there are a growing number of organizations and incubators that offer financing and mentorships to women-owned businesses, the agency found that few, if any, offered constructive feedback as to why a business wasn’t selected for their program.
"We realized that it wasn’t what female entrepreneurs were saying, but, perhaps, what they weren’t saying that was preventing them from getting to the next round. The rest of the vision grew from there," says Lawton.
"Our intent is to help other female entrepreneurs achieve their goals and create a community where women can share ideas and receive support," she says. While we would be honored if the women we help would someday seek out our services, we did not create the Enthuse Foundation as a client incubator."